India Mourns the Loss of Three Business Titans: PRS Oberoi, Kedarnath Aggarwal, and Subrata Roy
Date: November 15, 2023
In a sombre turn of events, India bids farewell to three towering figures in the business world, each leaving an indelible mark on their respective industries. PRS Oberoi, the visionary Chairman Emeritus of Oberoi Hotels Private Limited, Kedarnath Aggarwal, the snacking king and co-founder of Bikanervala Group, and Subrata Roy, the architect of Sahara Group, have left a void in India’s business landscape.
PRS Oberoi: A Pioneer in Hospitality
At the age of 94, PRS Oberoi, fondly known as “Biki,” breathed his last, leaving behind a legacy that transformed the hospitality sector in India. Born on February 3, 1929, he was the son of the founder of The Oberoi Group, Rai Bahadur M.S. Oberoi. PRS Oberoi’s global vision and leadership positioned Oberoi Hotels on the world map. He played a pivotal role in the development of Oberoi Hotels and Resorts and established the Oberoi Centre of Learning and Development in 1967, emphasizing the value of people in organizational success. His accolades include the Padma Vibhushan and a Lifetime Achievement Award at the International Hotels Investment Forum in Berlin.
Kedarnath Aggarwal: The Snacking Maestro
Kedarnath Aggarwal, the force behind Bikanervala, passed away at the age of 86. Starting from a sweet shop in Bikaner in 1905, Kedarnath, also known as “Kakaji,” alongside his brother Satyanarayan Aggarwal, expanded their family business to Delhi in the 1950s. Bikanervala became synonymous with delectable sweets such as Moong Dal Halwa and Bikaneri Bhujia. Kedarnath’s entrepreneurial journey led to the establishment of over 60 outlets across India and a global presence in the USA, New Zealand, Singapore, Nepal, and the UAE. His demise marks the end of an era, but the family vows to carry forward his values and culinary legacy.
Subrata Roy: Sahara Group’s Visionary Leader
Subrata Roy, the founder of Sahara Group, passed away at the age of 75 after a prolonged battle with health complications. In 2012, he was recognized as one of India’s most influential businessmen by India Today. Sahara Group, under his leadership, became the second-largest employer in India in 2004, boasting a workforce of 1.2 million. However, legal challenges arose in 2011 when SEBI ordered Sahara India Real Estate Corporation Ltd and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation Ltd to refund money raised from investors through illegal bonds. Despite the legal tussle, Subrata Roy’s impact extended beyond business; he was also a co-owner of the former Force India Formula One team.
The passing of PRS Oberoi, Kedarnath Aggarwal, and Subrata Roy is a profound loss to the Indian business community. Their contributions have not only shaped industries but have also left an enduring legacy that will be remembered for generations to come. As India mourns, the resilience and vision these tycoons displayed throughout their illustrious careers serve as an inspiration for the future of the nation’s business landscape