Industrialist and former Bajaj Auto Chairman Rahul Bajaj, known for always speaking truth to power and for building one of the largest conglomerates in the country, passed away on Saturday in Pune at the age of 83.
Bajaj was admitted in a hospital since last one month. He had pneumonia and was also suffering with other heart related ailments.
"It is with deep sorrow that I inform you about the passing away of Shri. Rahul Bajaj, husband of the late Rupa Bajaj and father of Rajiv/Deepa, Sanjiv/Shefali and Sunaina/Manish. He passed away on the afternoon of 12th February, 2022 in the presence of his closest family members," a statement from the Bajaj Group said.
Born in 1938, Bajaj chaired the 95-year-old Bajaj Group, best known for two-wheeler maker Bajaj Auto and its financial services arm, Bajaj Finserv. Under his leadership, the turnover of Bajaj Auto went up from Rs 7.2 crore to Rs 12,000 crore. He resigned as the chairman of the company last year and was currently the Chairman Emeritus.
In 2008, he split Bajaj Auto into three units -- Bajaj Auto, Bajaj Finserv and a holding company. Bajaj Auto is being run by his older son Rajiv, while his younger son Sanjiv heads Bajaj Finserv.
Bajaj was considered as one of India's most distinguished business leaders, and was respected globally for his business acumen and entrepreneurial spirit.
Bajaj was also a former MP of the Rajya Sabha, former chairman of Indian Airlines and former chairman of the board of governors of the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay. He was also the recipient of many awards, including the Padma Bhushan.
Bajaj was an alumnus of Harvard Business School and took over the Bajaj Group in 1968 when he was 30. He was also greatly appreciated for his contribution to the industry as the president of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) twice in 1979-80 and 1999-2000.
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