Cigarette Brands in India:
I used to be a smoker for many years. I smoked for over 30 years and have since given up over 7 years ago and have not touched a cigarette since then. I do not advise anyone to pick up this habit and I would urge the smokers to give up the habit asap.
I have very fond memories of my smoking years and the nostalgic memories make a history of brands....
Those good old days when I was a kid in primary school ( I did not smoke then, but had lot of fascination for it) , the brands then popular in small town Karnataka were 'Honeydew'(Hathi Chhap), and Berkely. There used to be a Passing Show with a fake tip which had no filter. I remember the ads with a guy in a hat!. Charminar was for the hard core smokers....then came Panama in a soft pouch pack which became pop[ular because the pack was water proof!
School kids used to start with Kool' a metholated cig with a white color filter, and 'North Pole another similar cig. They would then graduate to Four square.There was a scented oval shaped cig named Marcopolo , very popular amongst school boyz! All the cigs used to be small size only.Unfiltered Red&White, Capstan , Gold Flake, & Regent used to be premium brands.Gold flake & Capstan used to come in 50 stick Tin Cans.Then came Wills Navy cut with the "Made for each other" tag line which became the best seller.
Then came Plaza Kings...the first King size cig of India, it was a flop. Then came Foursquare Kings( Length & Strength) followed by Gold Flake & Wills Kings.Charms in a denim pack became an iconic brand and was very successful amongst the youth.
India Kings used to be a super deluxe brand.
Country side brands were Scissors ( very popular in army canteens), Cavendars ( The ash was used as an additive to beer in college hostels fore whatever the reason!), Lamp ( popular in Punjab).
Rich guys used to show around imported cigarettes like Dunhill, Benson& Hedges, 555,Lucky strike, More etc.
Then there was a brand which I am forgetting in a white pack of 20's which was endorsed by Sanjeev Kumar, can anyone help me remeber it? It was a good cig, but was not a commercial success and hence died out soon, so did Sanjeev Kumar! What a tragedy.