Rakesh Jhunjhunwala leaves a void in India’s investment play

Jhunjhunwala was rushed to the Breach Candy hospital nearby but was declared dead on arrival at 6:45 am.

Chaya Unnikrishnan Swapnil MishraUpdated: Sunday, August 14, 2022, 11:33 PM IST
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Rakesh Jhunjhunwala | File Image

Ace stock market investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala died suddenly on Sunday morning of a cardiac arrest at his Malabar Hill residence. He was 62.

Jhunjhunwala was rushed to the Breach Candy hospital nearby but was declared dead on arrival at 6:45 am.

Doctors said he had several co-morbidities which made his situation worse. “He had uncontrolled diabetes and kidney problems,” said Dr N Santhanam, chief executive officer, Breach Candy Hospital. He had also recently undergone an angioplasty.

A senior doctor at the hospital said Jhunjhunwala had been on dialysis for a while though he was responding well to the treatment. “A cardiac arrest was the cause of death,” said Dr Pratit Samdani in a statement.

Jhunjhunwala, who had the distinction of being the ‘most-tracked’ within the investor community, always made his decisions based on intuition backed by thorough research. He mostly bet on the long term, avoiding short-term play.

Naturally, a growing number of investors, who wanted to foray into the market, tracked his portfolio closely. Some of his early investments in Tata Group entities like Indian Hotels, Rallis India and Titan helped him gain the distinction of ‘Big Bull’.

The other aspect of his profile that built his reputation in the market was his commitment towards wealth creation and being candid about it.

Jhunjhunwala’s investment company, RARE Enterprises, named for Rakesh and his wife Rekha, amassed wealth to the tune of over $5.8 billion without ever getting embroiled in any major scams or controversies, bringing him the clean investor tag.

Though Jhunjhunwala’s name appeared in the news with some incidents of insider trading recently, he and a few others who were featured in those allegations took the consent route to settle them, where individuals can seek closure of a pending matter without admitting or denying the charges.

His untimely death, so soon after he returned to market attention as the face of a rejuvenated Indian civil aviation industry with the launch of Akasa Air, leaves behind a legacy of one of India’s most memorable investment regimes. His departure leaves a void in the Indian stock market.

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