Thu. Jun 13th, 2024

India’s multi-millionaire ‘new working class’ making double money their parents ever did

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun11,2024

Indian YouTube megastar Gaurav Chaudhary

Indian YouTube megastar Gaurav Chaudhary (Image: ANDY COMMINS)

EXCLUSIVE: Meet India’s young “new working class” propelling this vibrant nation towards becoming a $5trillion economy.

Indian YouTube megastar Gaurav Chaudhary is better known by his social media alias, “Technical Guruji”.

The tech social media star boasts an incredible reach, with 3.7 million followers on X, 5.4 on Instagram and 23.5 million YouTube subscribers.

India is a vast nation with access to cheap digital data, giving its people a voracious appetite for content consumption.

Gaurav has cornered a huge segment of India’s billion-strong market by giving tips, tricks and reviews on new products.

And with every million views wracking up roughly £1,000 worth in sales, it is a lucrative game.

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Technical Guruji dutifully takes time to get selfies with fans

Technical Guruji dutifully takes time to get selfies with fans (Image: ANDY COMMINS )

“Today every young Indian is full of energy,” the 33-year-old, who has built an international reputation, told the Express in Delhi.

We met at our hotel, with Gaurav having flown in hours before from the UAE – between where he splits his time with India.

On a stroll through the trendy Khan Market postcode, it was not long before he was swamped by adoring fans.

But Technical Guruji, who is wearing new Ray-Ban smart glasses, is humble and dutifully takes time to get selfies with people in between our chats.

Digital India, a flagship policy of Narendra Modi, has “completely changed the lifestyle of this entire country” Guarav told us.

He said: “It was in July of 2015 that PM Modi announced this entire program. And just a few months later in October, I started my journey.

“Over the years one program has uplifted the lifestyle of millions.”

The policy is all about democratising access to data and public services by removing the middle man and empowering free enterprise, which has helped facilitate content creators like Gaurav.

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Technical Guruji is wearing new Ray-Ban smart glasses

Technical Guruji is wearing new Ray-Ban smart glasses (Image: ANDY COMMINS)

He said: “It is a real success story of New India.”

Guarav pointed to India’s development of a unique QR-based payment system, UPI, as an example of how Digital India was succeeding.

He explained the technology has now reached Europe and is being used by tourists in Paris to get onto the Eiffel Tower.

He said: “That’s the power of how it is spreading globally now.”

Referring to major international companies such as Samsung now basing themselves in India, he said: “People are really starting to invest in India.”

Make in India is a programme initiated in 2014 designed to champion homegrown industry and encourage foreign investment.

Gaurav credited schemes like it as another reason major tech firms were flocking to India.

He said: “All the brands that want to come to India, brands like Apple, they want a place where it’s stable.

“Here you have amazing local talent.”

The tech expert pointed to this vote of confidence in the Indian economy as evidence of its growing success.

Just last week, Gaurav met one of India’s best exports, Google CEO Sundar Pichai

Just last week, Gaurav met one of India’s best exports, Google CEO Sundar Pichai (Image: SUPPLIED)

Just last week, Gaurav met one of India’s best exports, Google CEO Sundar Pichai.

He said: “Sundar told me he sees India as a country where you will see lots of exciting developments in the field of AI.”

“Today, every young Indian is more confident,” Technical Guruji said, pointing to an explosion in new start-ups in India.

He said: “We have more than 100,000 registered and ten years ago it was 350.

“India has the potential to take over the world.”

Guarav’s huge sense of optimism about India and its future was echoed by social media superstar and young entrepreneur Abeshik Asthana – known by his X handle @GabbarSingh, which has 1.5 million followers.

In the up-and-coming Delhi suburb of Gurgaon, we sat down with Abeshik, 34, for a poolside chat in his swanky apartment building. 

Abeshik explained he had a modest upbringing in the city of Chennai in eastern India.

In the up-and-coming Delhi suburb of Gurgaon, we sat down with Abeshik, 34

In the up-and-coming Delhi suburb of Gurgaon, we sat down with Abeshik, 34 (Image: ANDY COMMINS)

He said: “I did not come from a very rich background. I had very humble beginnings.

“My dad used to travel to work on a bicycle. Nowadays it’s cool to get to work on a cycle but back then it was seen as a poor form of transport.”

Abeshik went on to say he saw education as the way out of poverty.

He said: “The markets were liberalised in 1991 and before that, we had 40 years of socialism where the markets were closed and it used to take a year to purchase a motorbike or scooter.”

But in 1991 McDonald’s and Pepsi came to the country and it gave Abeshik the sense that he could achieve success if he studied hard.

After securing an engineering degree he soon landed a job at the top international firm Samsung. 

He said: “My first salary was twice my father’s salary at that time and I was only 22. And at 23 years of age, it felt like I had already made it. But I felt I wanted more.”

It was around this time that Abeshik launched the now-famous Gabbar Singh social media handle.

He chose the 1970s Bollywood villain “Gabbar Singh” as his online alias because it is a character many Indians connect with from their childhood.

“It was an accident actually,” he said. “I was trying to launch a funny blog so I made a bunch of characters and Gabbar was one of them. I ended up deleting all the others but keeping this one and it started to go viral with its posts.

“And it was when my flatmate came up to me one day and said, ‘Have you heard of this account?’ That I knew I was onto something.”

I did not come from a very rich background. I had very humble beginnings

‘I did not come from a very rich background. I had very humble beginnings’ (Image: ANDY COMMINS)

Today, the Gabbar Singh account has rapidly become a household name here in India and Abeshik’s monetised posts are even featured in the print media.

Back in the lobby of our Delhi hotel one of the managers told the Express she had heard of Gabbar — but she doesn’t even have an account on X.

It is a testament to the huge reach and impressive cut-through of his online observations and commentary.

Abeshik’s content is usually light-hearted with a nostalgic feel and is relatable for millions of fans.

He told us one of his most viral posts from a few years ago would not now work – in an example of India’s huge progression in recent times.

He said: “One of my most viral posts was a joke: ‘Sarcasm is like electricity. Half of India is yet to get it.’ But of course, this would not work anymore because Indians have got electricity now.

“And in this one line, I can say how much India has developed in the last ten years.”

The young Indian is also a business owner, founding and running the marketing firm Ginger Monkey remotely with a small team.

His company boasts an impressive global client list including Durex, Amazon Prime and indeed.com.

He was ahead of the curve when it came to home working meaning when Covid came around he was well equipped.

He said: “During Covid, we actually benefited and grew my business.”

Abeshik’s content is usually light-hearted

Abeshik’s content is usually light-hearted (Image: ANDY COMMINS)

Abeshik’s monetised posts are even featured in the print media

Abeshik’s monetised posts are even featured in the print media (Image: ANDY COMMINS)

Astonishingly, he told us most of his friends are now doing better than their parents financially.

It’s an incredible observation because most young people in the UK are struggling to buy a house let alone earn more than their parents.

But Abeshik is full of energy and zeal for “New India” — a confident nation choosing its own path.

To help explain what New India means, he introduced a fresh term: its “new working class”.

He explained it was now the younger aspirational generation starting to shape India’s seemingly unstoppable trajectory.

People living in his building worked at KPMG, McKinsey, Amazon and other global companies, he said.

“We are India’s new working class,” he said. “It’s an exciting time.”

Some 13%-14% of Indians are in what he calls the “consumer class”.

The rest are dependent in some way on the government for help.

But it is young entrepreneurs like Abeshik who are propelling India to new heights to lift those people into prosperity every single minute.

Raj is a start-up YouTuber

Raj is a start-up YouTuber (Image: ANDY COMMINS)

Raj Chaudhary, 28, is another example of New India’s aspirational and innovative spirit.

Also a tech content creator, the Express met Raj outside the towering India Gate monument to fallen Indian soldiers in the First World War.

Raj is a start-up YouTuber and Instagram star posting under the handle @rajchoudhary_upcomingworld.

But he already has a huge one million Instagram followers posting reviews and tech tips and his YouTube channel Upcoming World already boasts more than a million subscribers.

Raj has a huge one million Instagram followers

Raj has a huge one million Instagram followers (Image: ANDY COMMINS)

he Express met Raj outside the towering India Gate monument

The Express met Raj outside the towering India Gate monument (Image: ANDY COMMINS)

He said: “There are a lot of government schemes in India and I try to make young people aware of them.

“New media is replacing traditional legacy media. I never watch TV now I see news on Instagram and YouTube now.”

And even older generations are now getting involved, Raj said.

He said: “Even my father wants an Instagram account now!”

India’s reasonably priced data was helping to democratise access to social media across the country, Raj explained.

He said: “We are a huge country and we are growing – in the last five years there have been a lot of initiatives such as Skill India and Digital India to help spread access to the internet across India and digitalise the country.

“We are getting more empowered. I am making a good amount of money through YouTube and Instagram.

“I feel overwhelmed by the success I have had as I can follow my passion!”

The overwhelming sense of optimism conveyed by Guarav, Abeshik and Raj chimes with the feeling of progress and rapid development you can physically witness all around here in India.

It is time for the UK to sit up and take note.

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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One thought on “India’s multi-millionaire ‘new working class’ making double money their parents ever did”
  1. As an Indian myself, I am truly inspired by Gaurav’s journey and the impact he has made in the tech industry. It’s amazing to see how the new generation is reshaping the economy and embracing the digital era with such energy and enthusiasm.

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