rahul:  Rahul Bajaj was very outspoken on matters that concerned India - Times of India

rahul: Rahul Bajaj was very outspoken on matters that concerned India – Times of India

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NEW DELHI: Rahul Bajaj saw India go through the Independence movement, which his family was a big part of. He was deeply involved in the industrialisation of India. He was an institution-builder and gave to innumerable charities, through their foundations. Rahul was known for being very outspoken and frank about expressing his opinion on matters that concerned India. These were largely in the fields of business, economy, politics, government and society.
Most people saw him as a big businessman and a towering figure in corporate and social India. But there was another side to him; he was a great friend, mentor and father figure to many of us.
Rahul was a nationalist at heart. He wanted to build a strong and self-reliant India. An India of the values that were fought for in the freedom struggle, and were instilled in him by his grandparents and parents. His expression of nationalism came through in his institution-building, varied businesses, providing employment and giving back to society in many ways. His outspokenness was also his expression of what he felt was needed to be done, to build a great and successful country.
He believed in course-correcting, whether he agreed or disagreed with anything. Rahul was brutally frank, but always fair. He was able to keep a large multi-generational family together through his values and openness. He smoothly passed on the baton in the business to his sons and cousins, and became the patriarch who was available for advice and support. This was true for his friends as well.
Before Brand India was known in The World Economic Forum, Brand Rahul was already flying the Indian tricolour high. He was one of the first Indians and the most regular participants of the WEF, in Davos. On a personal note, we always looked forward to the third week of January, when we would make our annual pilgrimage to Zurich on the Swiss Air flight from Mumbai, onwards to Davos, under the leadership of our dear friend Rahul. It was not only a week of intellectual growth and business networking, but also of socialising and building bonds to last a lifetime.
Coming to our lives in Pune, we had a small group of friends who regularly met with Rahul and Rupa for the last 30 years. He was always the life of the party, always jovial, always wanting to share his thoughts and point of view. He was always dependable, a good friend who was always there for his near and dear.
Rahul leaves a huge void in the lives of all those whom he touched – family, friends, employees, countless business associates who grew with Bajaj. India as a whole gained with his clear voice of reason and principles of over four decades.
My family and I have had the privilege of being very close to the Bajaj family for several years, having known Rahul personally for close to 50 years.
He will be missed by us and remembered most fondly.
The author is chairman & managing director, Bharat Forge



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