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Rahul Bajaj passes away at 83.
By R L Ravichandran

It’s with a heavy coronary heart that I’ve to put in writing this obituary for the Auto industry chief Rahul Bajaj who handed away on Saturday. Once I met him first to approve my candidature introduced by his son Rajiv, I can’t overlook the humility of such a towering character who stood as much as greet me and welcome me to his workplace, and I felt how little I used to be. It was a pleasing interplay and never a proper interview. He was fairly frank in his views. He outlined what was okay and never okay within the organisation and what he anticipated me to do. He was eager to ask me all about my household, and simply stated that I may very well be of assist in increase the organisation to rise as much as the plans his son has been engaged on. That sealed the discussions. He even allowed my very own interpretation of the scope of my work in Bajaj Auto and a title that defined my function as enterprise and product improvement head. These usually are not quite common in these days, and even now. However that was his simplicity and belief. In lots of conferences he chaired, one factor was clear, who was the boss with out his authority on show by his real strategy. He listened to each view level because it was related and at last determined what was good for Bajaj Auto as an organization. As soon as it was determined it was over and performed. No change. That was a time when Bajaj dominated because the nation’s largest two- wheeler in numbers, in revenues and in earnings. I bear in mind each month his concluding level as “Are we primary in numbers”?It was complete scooter gross sales of over a lakh a month and some hundreds of bikes. When the nation was drifting slowly in direction of bikes over scooters it all the time was a process to make him settle for that bikes have been to remain and it was tough to cease this variation over. Although he understood he was reluctant to confess. It was in a kind of occasions that we stood watching our coveted place of primary altering to quantity 2. However then he stood in full defence to help us in our early efforts to create the bike portfolio Rajiv envisioned to construct, with or with out know-how coming from any companions. Every other individual would have ridiculed us. However he did prolong unreserved help by way of buying know-how, the manufacturing course of, and even a brand new manufacturing unit with state-of-the-art services. And that’s Chakan. The turnaround and flagship bike for Bajaj from scratch to manufacturing line was ‘The Positively Male Pulsar’. However to Rahul Bajaj’s credit score one mustn’t overlook the ever present autorickshaw. After which the rear engine auto. Within the 1980’s and 90s and even right now Bajaj passenger autorickshaw is ruling the roost not solely right here however in lots of different international locations, and the unforgettable Sunny. Chetak Tremendous Scooters he created. Lastly, when Rajiv launched the brand new electrical scooter in 2020 and named it Chetak he felt very completely happy and elated. A star is reborn. I had the chance to speak to him over cellphone late at evening on the day of Chetak electrical launch and I may really feel his happiness over Chetak’s new avatar, an ideal and well timed reward of the profitable son to his illustrious father. His foresight and enterprise acumen have been very distinct when he rolled out Bajaj Allianz Insurance coverage, with Sanjiv Bajaj heading and shaping it as it’s right now because the nation’s high client finance with tens of millions of shoppers to Bajaj Finserve. He has all the time been a trusted CEO for his staff. A rewarding firm for his buyers and true consultant of the business and varied federations he led in his time. Above all his integrity, enterprise ethics and management in creating massive infrastructure and the burning need to be the #1 on the planet is what makes him a Legendary chief we have now seen in our occasions. A real Gandhian, as imbibed from his father, and the real care with which he nurtured his service-oriented organisations, hospitals, instructional establishments, are really serving many deserving folks round Maharashtra. He was very candid and known as a spade a spade regardless of whom he was addressing. However his integrity, honesty and ease has left an indelible impression on the Indian historical past of entrepreneurship and family- run enterprise empires. Truthfully, they could not make such colossal personalities as Rahul Bajaj any extra. We used to say “East or west…. Rahul is the very best.” And we meant it. And I imply it perpetually. Disclaimer: R L Ravichandran is an business veteran and a former advertising head of Bajaj Auto. Views expressed are private.



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