It was the only thing that caught my attention when the man was talking. He had used the word jugaad. I heard this word for the first time in Gurgaon. A friend was describing a set of non-performers looking for a get-rich-quick scheme. In his words, “In this part of the world, there is a word to describe these kinds of people– jugaadu”. The Hindi speakers were nodding the head in agreement. But, I was perplexed. Seeing the look on my face, my friend explained the meaning in detail.

After the hearing the explanation in an alternating cycle of keen attention and wild distraction, I was happy. My Hindi vocabulary was richer by a word that can be used in various scenarios conveying different meanings. I soon started flaunting this new acquired word in conversations.

You should do… (wicked smile)… jugaad

Lets us do… (wink and a smile)… some jugaad

I was elated whenever I used the word. In bliss, I never bothered to check the expression on the face of the poor souls who bore the brunt of my usage. At one point, I experienced boundless joy when a team member suggested the same word while proposing a solution to get out of a sticky situation.

So, today, I was surprised when the man used the word. He came towards me when I was entering the office building. As soon as he approached me, I sensed the salesman on the verge of breaking out. I did not pay any attention to his pitch because I was busy preparing a “No” for whatever he was offering. The word “jugaad” threw me off balance. I started concentrating on his Haryanvi accented Hindi.

He drives a truck that is used to carry goods cleared by the customs. The driver’s job doesn’t pay much. So he takes some of the items off the truck and sells it on the side. That is his jugaad. He displayed a 32 GB Kingston pen drive. I could take it at a price lesser than the market price. I politely refused the offer.

When he insisted, I agreed to pass the word around. As promised, I informed one of my colleagues about the person standing at the gates. He gathered a posse and went to meet the Haryanvi jugaad guy. The posse did not find the price to be right. So they came back without buying the pen drive. As a result, my efforts towards stimulating the “local” economy was wasted. Fate played a jugaad on me

Picture Courtesy: Wikipedia, www.diytrade.com

Tags: Musings,Jugaad,Gurgaon


  1. Good blog,

    i even have more for you.

    See the real jugaad blog
    i bet you will definitely like it.

  2. that was a good one!! Wonder what the bangla synonym to jugaad would be? "Chalaki" does not express as much as the word Jugaad, let me know if you come up with it.

  3. @Jugaad_Owner - Thanks for dropping by. I will check out your site.

    @Sujata - Thanks.
    I'm sure there will be something equivalent to Jugaad in Bangla. I will let you know if I come across it. :)

  4. Ha Ha 'Jugadu' was interesting...you are right Nona, when you attach 'u' to any of this imported words it becomes local (ie Kannada). By the by, Jugudu could have been the result of 'swalpa adjust maadi' concept :)

  5. @Vaz - :) I like the "swalpa adjust maadi" concept!


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