About the Blog

This is my diary....what I make sense of, around me. You'll find short prose on contemporary topics that interest me. What can you expect - Best adjectives? …. hmm occasionally, tossed around flowery verbs ?…. Nope, haiku-like super-brevity? … I try to. Thanks for dropping by & hope to see you again

May 8, 2010

The Ambani Saga continues...

The supreme court made its verdict in the Ambani Gas dispute yesterday. It was no ordinary dispute but the kind of media attention it got was amazing. No other corporate group would even come close to the kind of drama that was played out. The 2 dramatis personae of this saga, Mukesh & Anil have been at each others throats for a long time,and the family story has been the kind of stuff or rather fluff that the Bollywood mills churn out regularly. There is this patriarch (Dhirubhai) who starts out as a petrol bunk attendant but goes on to successfully flourish in the license raj era and create an industrial empire with his typical Gujju way of working around obstacles . He excels in the art of covert operations and wherever possible uses the cloak & dagger technique to hit out at competitors. But then the father never expected that the same techniques would be used by his 2 sons against each other.

The supreme court episode has been one of the important turning point of this drama (power struggle) that probably began after Dhirubhais death in July 2002. The father died telling the world “ My sons are never going to fight over family assets. They’ll always be together”. He probably underestimated that the 2 brothers (with a 2 year gap between them) were poles apart right from their childhood and deeply distrusted each other. So when he went ahead & made Mukesh the vice chairman, Anil raised the hackles because he felt Mukesh was treating the Reliance group like his personal fiefdom and alienating him from the decision making process. On the other hand Mukesh saw his younger brother as a non serious businessman; one who had time to go to parties, rub shoulders with politicians and middlemen and move around with celebrities.

However somewhere down the line Mukesh seemed to have made his mark especially by commissioning the Jamnagar petrochemical plan (which was touted as one of the world’s largest and most complex project) and claimed his father’s legacy from the Investors and the Business world. That has only fuelled Anils ambition & his angst to outdo him . And the ensuing war , in the truest of Ambani tradition, has been fierce , murky and no holds barred. The 2 brothers have hurled mud at each other that is still stuck, they have ripped each other’s credibility as entrepreneurs, they exposed the unprofessional manner in which each ran his companies, they exposed the alleged dishonesty of senior most managers in the group. All this & probably it’s still not over , like Shahrukh khan In Om Shanti Om Anil might be still saying “ Abhi Kahani baki hai, mere dost”.

P.S: I Recommend the book ‘Storms in the Sea Wind’ by Alam Srinivas for readers interested in the blow-by-blow account of the war between Mukesh & Anil.
Post a Comment

Feedburner Count