You’ve Never Used Google Maps Like You’re About to

Avrodh’s launch on Sony LIV blends the worlds of Google Maps and YouTube

4 years ago, India was introduced to a new set of words that’d dominate political discussions, news commentaries, WhatsApp forwards, and tea-time conversations — the Surgical Strikes.

The actions of our Special Forces successfully conducting this daring raid on terrorist launch pads sparked patriotic celebrations, political debates, and even a movie that branded the Surgical Strikes into our collective memories.

And sadly, that’s all that we remember. Not our planners who led the charge with the most significant pivot in India’s response to terrorism, not our diplomats who laid down enough cover fire to distract the enemy, not our brave soldiers who successfully planned a mission that was carried out without any casualties.

To be honest, we ourselves didn’t know we’d forgotten so many people until we got the brief from Trigger Happy to promote Sony LIV’s Avrodh: The Siege Within. We, too, thought it was just a longer version of the blockbuster Uri — The Surgical Strike.

But apart from their runtimes, there was a key difference — Avrodh was determined to trace the story of the Surgical Strike set in the villages of Kashmir, against the iconic green marble wall at the UN HQ to the corridors of power in our nation’s capital. AS. IT. HAPPENED.

So many people at so many places came together to make the Strikes a success. You’d almost have to plot them on a map to make any sense of it. “Actually, that’d be cool”, we thought to ourselves. (Anyone who’d seen those Call of Duty mission briefing cutscenes can relate.)

Google Maps’ custom map option gave us the platform that we needed to create an interactive walkthrough that’d leave visitors astounded by the sheer number of cogs running under this massive operation we refer to as the Surgical Strikes.

Now, you can across India and the world on Google Maps and find out the strategy that went behind it. For real.

Click here to dive into the experience on Google Maps.

6 months after we pitched the idea, we’d not only managed to smooth out all the wrinkles but also found the perfect time to launch it — on the anniversary of the Surgical Strike.

You can then also click on the thumbnail to watch each momentous surgical strike in action:

Yes, you read it right. It took us 6 months to get here. But the usual move-countermove practice between agencies and clients that could put chess grandmasters to shame, wasn’t responsible for it all.

First was the experience — being an OTT platform, Sony LIV was understandably worried about putting their footage up on a public domain that could be accessed by everyone. Also, how little is too little? Treading the careful line between giving users a complete experience while also not showing everything in the show took up most of the time.

Also keeping it on the right side of factual was key. Without on-field researchers, we had to rely on the power of our article browsing skills, trying to pick out locations and piece them together to complete this portrait of the Surgical Strike. For good reason, the military does not make the locations of their bases and of other significant events available on the public domain. This, too, kept us bogged down in the time swamp.

In conclusion, by talking only about the Surgical Strike, we failed to recognize their actions and by extension have forgotten their contribution. This was the least we could do for our jawans & defence planners who are hard at work protecting our borders, we’re proud to play a role in documenting a momentous move in India’s foreign policy and thus, preserving their legacy.

India’s favourite creative agency. Estd. 1999.