Subrata Roy dead, founder of Sahara Group died today

Subrata Roy, the visionary founder of Sahara India Pariwar, breathed his last on Wednesday, November 14, at the age of 75. After an extended period of treatment at a private hospital in Mumbai, he bid farewell, leaving an indelible mark on the Indian business landscape.

Born on June 10, 1948, in Araria, Bihar, Roy emerged as a key figure in Indian business, creating an expansive empire that transcended finance, real estate, media, and hospitality.

Roy’s journey commenced with a mechanical engineering education at the Government Technical Institute in Gorakhpur. Initially involved in business in Gorakhpur, he took over Sahara Finance, a struggling chit fund company, in 1976. By 1978, he transformed it into Sahara India Pariwar, evolving into one of India’s largest conglomerates.

Under Roy’s leadership, Sahara diversified into various sectors. Initiatives included the launch of Hindi newspaper Rashtriya Sahara in 1992, the Aamby Valley City project near Pune in the late 1990s, and the foray into television with Sahara TV, later rebranded Sahara One. In the 2000s, Sahara made global headlines with landmark acquisitions like London’s Grosvenor House Hotel and New York City’s Plaza Hotel.

Time magazine once hailed Sahara India Pariwar as India’s second-largest employer after Indian Railways, with approximately 1.2 million employees. The conglomerate claimed over 9 crore investors, representing a substantial share of Indian households.

Despite legal challenges, including a 2014 Supreme Court order for his detention related to a dispute with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), Roy continued making contributions. The legal battle resulted in his imprisonment at Tihar Jail and subsequent release on parole. The case centered on SEBI’s demand for Sahara to refund billions to investors, leading to the establishment of a “Sahara-Sebi refund account” by the Supreme Court.

Roy received numerous accolades, including an honorary doctorate in business leadership from the University of East London and the Business Icon of the Year award at the Powerbrands Hall of Fame Awards in London. His name frequented the India Today list of the country’s most powerful individuals.

In later years, Roy embraced new ventures such as Sahara Evols, offering electric vehicles, and plans to enter the online education sector with Edunguru, targeting small towns and villages.

Subrata Roy’s life was characterized by remarkable achievements and notable controversies. His legacy, as a once highly influential businessman, will endure through the Sahara Group, impacting millions across the nation. As the Sahara family mourns its founder, Subrata Roy’s visionary spirit and entrepreneurial legacy will resonate for years to come.

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