Tag Archives: S. Sadanand

Ex-journo who lords over a Rs 3,000 crore empire


Mail Today, the tabloid daily from the India Today group, reports today on Ravindra Kishore Sinha, the Patna businessman worth Rs 3,000 crore who is about to gain entry into India’s most exclusive club, the Rajya Sabha, courtesy the BJP.

Sinha, who runs a security firm called SIS, has declared his net assets at Rs 564 crore, while his spouse has declared Rs 230 crore.

“A self-made man, the 62-year-old leader started his career as a trainee journalist with The Searchlight and Pradeep (now defunct) dailies in Patna in 1971. He quit his job in 1974.

“In the course of his job, he was assigned to cover the Bangladesh war, where he came in contact with some army men who inspired him to set up his maiden entrepreneurial venture, SIS, for the ex-servicemen.

“With a paltry sum of Rs 250, Sinha launched his business and went on to script the proverbial rags-to-riches tale with his sharp business acumen.”

For the record, The Searchlight, which was launched by a group of luminaries led by Syed Hasan Imam, built its reputation as an “anti-colonial newspaper“.

Its first editor was a Muslim, Syed Haidar Husain, and its rolls later boasted of such stellar names as T.J.S. George, who later founded Asiaweek magazine in Hong Kong.

The paper was published from 1918 to 1986, before it was subsumed by the Birla-owned Hindustan Times. India’s first President, Dr Rajendra Prasad, was a founder-director of The Searchlight.

Photograph: courtesy Mail Today

Read the full report: India’s richest MP

Also read: Forbes can now name India’s second richest woman

12 media barons worth Rs 2,962, 530,000,000


Bal Thackeray’s banter at FPJ’s ‘Malayali Club’

T.J.S. George, the founder-editor of Asiaweek magazine, who worked under the legendary S. Sadanand at the Free Press Journal in Bombay, on their common-colleague and staff cartoonist, Bal Thackeray:

“Spicy coffee-house theories spread that Thackeray had developed a personal grudge against South Indians. There was talk that he was jealous of R.K. Laxman who started out in FPJ and went on to glory while he, Thackeray, was denied his due. In fact, Thackeray not only had high regard for Laxman, but counted South Indians among his buddies in FPJ.

“There was a good deal of banter. Thackeray called the FPJ news desk the Malayali Club. The celebrated crime reporter M.P. Iyer constantly  showered friendly abuse on Thackeray. But Thackeray would not take offence because Iyer used colloquial Marathi with a brilliance Thackeray could not command.

“At least on one occasion, Thackeray paid public tribute to Iyer and S.Sadanand, FPJ’s founder, holding them up as models for young journalists to follow.”

Read the full article: A cartoonist with a sense of humour

Illustration: Mario Miranda for Upper Crust