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Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, ‘India’s Warren Buffet’, dies at 62


Equity investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, nicknamed the Indian Warren Buffett with an estimated net worth of $6 billion, died early Sunday at the age of 62, his family announced.

A chartered accountant by profession hailing from the desert state of Rajasthan, Jhunjhunwala first became interested in stocks while in college and later ran a stock trading company, RARE Enterprises.

“Rakesh-ji passed away surrounded by his family and loved ones,” a family member told Reuters, using a term for respect.

The cause of death was not immediately announced.

The promoter of the very new Indian airline, the very low-cost Akasa Air, Jhunjhunwala appeared a few days ago during its public launch. He is survived by his wife and three children.

An ambulance leaves Breach Candy Hospital carrying Rakesh Jhunjhunwala to Mumbai on August 14, 2022.
AFP via Getty Images

Jhunjhunwala’s excellent communication skills helped retail investors understand the stock market, said businessmen and bankers based in India’s financial capital, Mumbai, who had interacted with him for more than 30 years. . His knowledge of economics and business has made him a popular television celebrity.

Jhunjhunwala’s bets include a number of companies run by Tata Group, one of India’s largest conglomerates. These include Tata Motors, watchmaker Titan, Tata Communications and Indian Hotels Co, which runs Taj hotels.

Other investments include Indiabulls Housing Finance, Star Health Insurance and Federal Bank.

Media cameras are seen outside Breach Candy Hospital where Rakesh Jhunjhunwala was admitted in Mumbai on August 14, 2022.
Media cameras are seen outside Breach Candy Hospital where Rakesh Jhunjhunwala was admitted in Mumbai on August 14, 2022.
AFP via Getty Images

Top politicians and business leaders mourned his death on social media.

“Rakesh Jhunjhunwala was indomitable,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi wrote on Twitter.

“Full of life, witty and insightful, he leaves behind an indelible contribution to the financial world. He was also very passionate about India’s progress. His death is saddening. My condolences to his family and fans.

Modi ended with “Om Shanti”, an invocation for peace.

Uday Kotak, managing director of Kotak Mahindra and a school friend, said Jhunjhunwala had “thought Indian stocks were undervalued” and that he was right.

“Amazingly sharp in understanding financial markets,” Kotak tweeted. “We spoke regularly, more so during COVID. I will miss you Rakesh!

New York Post

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