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In Pictures: India's iconic Ambassador car
Suspension of classic automobile and "grand old lady" marks end of an era and also uncertainty for workers at factory.
Last updated: 16 Jun 2014 15:47
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The Ambassador, one of the first cars made in India, has been phased out after parent company Hindustan Motors announced the suspension of production in its Uttarpara factory in Kolkata, the capital of the eastern West Bengal state last month.

With a hardy structure and dependable performance, the curvy car came to be known as made for the Indian roads. It has plied smoothly over bad and bumpy stretches for more than 60 years.

In its heyday, Amby, as it is called affectionately, catered to the elites, politicians, and bureaucrats. It became a status symbol.

But with minimal customisation through the years, it slowly lost its market to newer, more glamorous cars. 

Apart from being used as taxis in major cities of India, Amby retained its crown. It is still the beloved "grand old lady" to its fans.

As it stands on the verge of becoming history, memories and attachments with the cars are being revived. But the workers at the factory behind the car, who have now lost their jobs, are feeling the loss the most.


/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

The Ambassador is considered as a definitive Indian car and is fondly called "The grand old lady of Indian roads". It has been in production since 1957.



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

An Ambassador passes in front of the historic writer's building in Kolkata, West Bengal, India's eastern state. The automobile was manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant near Kolkata



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

Muneshwar Shaw, 86, has been looking after this garage for 35 years. He says the Ambassador is the sturdiest car of all the cars running on the streets of India.



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

Hindustan Motors recently shut down its factory in Uttarpara.



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

The company on May 24 declared suspension of all work at this unit until further notice.



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

One of the oldest models of the Ambassador parked in front of a house in Kolkata. The halt in production was forced by low productivity, lack of funds and demand.



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

An Ambassador taxi being pushed by by-standers to jump-start it at a busy area in Kolkata. The curved taxis are still quite a common sight around the country.



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

With minimal customisation through the years, it slowly lost its market to newer, more glamorous cars.



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

Workers, who lost their jobs after the closure of the Hindustan Motor factory at Uttarpara, protest in front of the site.



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

R Sharma,52, a worker at the Hindustan Motor plant at his single room quarter. He is unhappy with the suspension order and overall maintenance of the workers' quarters. He has not received his salary for last six months just like the other workers of the factory. 



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

Krishna Murari Yadav, 55, with his family, at his residential quarters. According to him, the suspension order is ad-hoc and unfair. "We never came to know that work would be stopped". Being a union member he is vocal in his protest. "When we go to the grocer, he doesn't want to give us stuff on loan as everyone knows we are not getting salary. It is humiliating". He is hopeful the factory will resume work again.



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

An old Ambassador taxi being repaired at a garage in Kolkata.



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

The residential quarters of Hindustan Motors' workers. 



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

The premises of the Hindustan Motor factory.



/Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

The empty Ambassador shed of Hindustan Motors.




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images:
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captions:

The Ambassador is considered as a definitive Indian car and is fondly called "The grand old lady of Indian roads". It has been in production since 1957.

;*;

An Ambassador passes in front of the historic writer(***)s building in Kolkata, West Bengal, India(***)s eastern state. The automobile was manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant near Kolkata

;*;

Muneshwar Shaw, 86, has been looking after this garage for 35 years. He says the Ambassador is the sturdiest car of all the cars running on the streets of India.

;*;

Hindustan Motors recently shut down its factory in Uttarpara.

;*;

The company on May 24 declared suspension of all work at this unit until further notice.

;*;

One of the oldest models of the Ambassador parked in front of a house in Kolkata. The halt in production was forced by low productivity, lack of funds and demand.

;*;

An Ambassador taxi being pushed by by-standers to jump-start it at a busy area in Kolkata. The curved taxis are still quite a common sight around the country.

;*;

With minimal customisation through the years, it slowly lost its market to newer, more glamorous cars.

;*;

Workers, who lost their jobs after the closure of the Hindustan Motor factory at Uttarpara, protest in front of the site.

;*;

R Sharma,52, a worker at the Hindustan Motor plant at his single room quarter. He is unhappy with the suspension order and overall maintenance of the workers(***) quarters. He has not received his salary for last six months just like the other workers of the factory. 

;*;

Krishna Murari Yadav, 55, with his family, at his residential quarters. According to him, the suspension order is ad-hoc and unfair. "We never came to know that work would be stopped". Being a union member he is vocal in his protest. "When we go to the grocer, he doesn(***)t want to give us stuff on loan as everyone knows we are not getting salary. It is humiliating". He is hopeful the factory will resume work again.

;*;

An old Ambassador taxi being repaired at a garage in Kolkata.

;*;

The residential quarters of Hindustan Motors(***) workers. 

;*;

The premises of the Hindustan Motor factory.

;*;

The empty Ambassador shed of Hindustan Motors.

Daylife ID:
1a8c7e17c147954fefb4b97f6cec82b1
Photographer:
;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;;*;
Image Source:
Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis;*;Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis
Gallery Source:
Daylife
Daylife Raw Data:
Amassadorhttp://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassadoren-ussupport@newscred.comUntitled Site10Wed, 11 Jun 2014 12:52:51 GMT http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/b59363e423dd31b6d27d54d56fd7e581

The Ambassador is considered as a definitive Indian car and is fondly called 'The grand old lady of Indian roads' in production from 1957.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant near Kolkata, West Bengal,India.But on May 24, Hindustan Motors declared suspension of work at this unit citing low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/b59363e423dd31b6d27d54d56fd7e581Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

The Ambassador is considered as a definitive Indian car and is fondly called 'The grand old lady of Indian roads' in production from 1957.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant near Kolkata, West Bengal,India.But on May 24, Hindustan Motors declared suspension of work at this unit citing low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/d8be5442bd989167b8ac7079e8acacf0

An Ambassador passes in front of the historic writer's building in kolkata,West bengal,India. The Ambassador is considered as a definitive Indian car and is fondly called 'The grand old lady of Indian roads' in production from 1957.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant near Kolkata, West Bengal,India.But on May 24, Hindustan Motors declared suspension of work at this unit citing low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/d8be5442bd989167b8ac7079e8acacf0Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

An Ambassador passes in front of the historic writer's building in kolkata,West bengal,India. The Ambassador is considered as a definitive Indian car and is fondly called 'The grand old lady of Indian roads' in production from 1957.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant near Kolkata, West Bengal,India.But on May 24, Hindustan Motors declared suspension of work at this unit citing low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/958e235b2bcf6e07c176996c1a44df96

Muneshwar Shaw, 86 ,has been looking after the garage for 35 years,in North kolkata,West Bengal,India.He considers Ambassador as the sturdiest car of all the cars running on the streets of India.Hindustan Motors which has been manufacturing ambassadors since 1957, declared suspension of work on May 24 at Uttarpara unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/958e235b2bcf6e07c176996c1a44df96Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

Muneshwar Shaw, 86 ,has been looking after the garage for 35 years,in North kolkata,West Bengal,India.He considers Ambassador as the sturdiest car of all the cars running on the streets of India.Hindustan Motors which has been manufacturing ambassadors since 1957, declared suspension of work on May 24 at Uttarpara unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/256b08fd36760d4d06a75091e6579988

A man washing an ambassador,in Kolkata,West Bengal,India. On May 24, Hindustan Motors shut down its factory in Uttarpara in West Bengal ,India, where it has been making the Ambassador since 1957 ,until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/256b08fd36760d4d06a75091e6579988Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

A man washing an ambassador,in Kolkata,West Bengal,India. On May 24, Hindustan Motors shut down its factory in Uttarpara in West Bengal ,India, where it has been making the Ambassador since 1957 ,until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/2b9982c0a02e2cb39960086c633cbed4

An ambassador parked in a garage in kolkata,westbengal,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant in kolkata.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, citing low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/2b9982c0a02e2cb39960086c633cbed4Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

An ambassador parked in a garage in kolkata,westbengal,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant in kolkata.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, citing low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/8e5cdf6a8c3a20d8e0d7c8871352ad99

The oldest Car Ambassador parked in front of a house in kolkata,Westbengal,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant since 1957 near Kolkata.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/8e5cdf6a8c3a20d8e0d7c8871352ad99Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

The oldest Car Ambassador parked in front of a house in kolkata,Westbengal,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant since 1957 near Kolkata.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/ca6a21c3429b0ea1667e578ff4817c39

An Ambassador taxi being pushed by by standers to jump start it at College Street area in kolkata,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant since 1957 near Kolkata, West Bengal,India.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/ca6a21c3429b0ea1667e578ff4817c39Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

An Ambassador taxi being pushed by by standers to jump start it at College Street area in kolkata,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant since 1957 near Kolkata, West Bengal,India.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/d91d62cd80b8addfa57e2356cd8c3030

Children sitting in front of abandoned ambassadors in kolkata,West bengal,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant since 1957 in Kolkata.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/d91d62cd80b8addfa57e2356cd8c3030Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

Children sitting in front of abandoned ambassadors in kolkata,West bengal,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant since 1957 in Kolkata.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

Ambi 11http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/ambi-11/5a35321e11a191ec61a65ea11c5a548f

An old Ambassador taxi being repaired at a garage in Kolkata,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant since 1957 near Kolkata.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/ambi-11/5a35321e11a191ec61a65ea11c5a548fParomita Chatterjee/Agency GenesisAmbi 11

An old Ambassador taxi being repaired at a garage in Kolkata,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant since 1957 near Kolkata.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/31b3861dc1399265a2ae0f23ce5b834f

Workers on a sit in protest in front of the Hind Motor Factory at Uttarpara near kolkata,India. Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/31b3861dc1399265a2ae0f23ce5b834fParomita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

Workers on a sit in protest in front of the Hind Motor Factory at Uttarpara near kolkata,India. Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/b372e055938840cedb0d5340231e52e1

Premises of Hind Motor factory, Uttarpara near Kolkata,India. The automobile has been manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant since 1957. But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/b372e055938840cedb0d5340231e52e1Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

Premises of Hind Motor factory, Uttarpara near Kolkata,India. The automobile has been manufactured by Hindustan Motors at its Uttarpara plant since 1957. But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/9021460991a328d477e6c1584021cd92

The empty Ambassador shed of Hind Motors at Uttarpara near kolkata,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors since 1957 at its Uttarpara plant.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/9021460991a328d477e6c1584021cd92Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

The empty Ambassador shed of Hind Motors at Uttarpara near kolkata,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors since 1957 at its Uttarpara plant.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/c050d0e8f979298b7809ee1a7ac3d48c

The residential quarter of Hind Motors' workers at Uttarpara near Kolkata,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors since 1957 at its Uttarpara plant. But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/c050d0e8f979298b7809ee1a7ac3d48cParomita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

The residential quarter of Hind Motors' workers at Uttarpara near Kolkata,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors since 1957 at its Uttarpara plant. But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/709330b2a5f67c2235efc0cc8d87ff39

R.Sharma,52, a worker at the Hind Motor plant at his single room quarter in Uttarpara near Kolkata,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors since 1957 at its Uttarpara plant.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/709330b2a5f67c2235efc0cc8d87ff39Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

R.Sharma,52, a worker at the Hind Motor plant at his single room quarter in Uttarpara near Kolkata,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors since 1957 at its Uttarpara plant.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/93c49f314e346eee0553e2b3ad75da04

Krishna Murari Yadav,55, with his family, at his residential quarter of Hind Motors at Uttarpara near Kolkata,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors since 1957 at its Uttarpara plant.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.

http://aljazeera.galleries.newscred.com/gallery/Amassador/slideshow/no-caption/93c49f314e346eee0553e2b3ad75da04Paromita Chatterjee/Agency Genesis

Krishna Murari Yadav,55, with his family, at his residential quarter of Hind Motors at Uttarpara near Kolkata,India.The automobile is manufactured by Hindustan Motors since 1957 at its Uttarpara plant.But Hindustan Motors on May 24 declared suspension of work at this unit until further notice, forced by low productivity, fund crunch and lack of demand.



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