Jamnalal Bajaj is an Indian businessman, industrialist, and politician. He is the founder of the Indian multinational conglomerate company, Bajaj Group. It got founded in the 1920s, and it now has 24 companies, including six listed on bourses. Jamnalal was also a close aide of Mahatma Gandhi, and both were so close that people often declared Bajaj as his fifth son. He also got conferred with the title of Raj Bahadur by the Britishers. So, let us delve into this article to read the success story of this remarkable man who started a billion-dollar empire.
Jamnalal Bajaj - Key Highlights
- Full Name – Raj Bahadur Jamnalal Kaniram Bajaj
- Date of Birth – 4 November 1889
- Place of Birth – Kashi Ka Bas, Sikar, Rajasthan, India
- Date of Death – 11 February 1942 (aged 52 years)
- Place of Death – Wardha, Central Provinces, British India
- Profession – Industrialist, Businessman, Political Leader
- Designation – Founder of Bajaj Group
- Marital Status – Married
- Spouse – Janaki Devi Bajaj (m. 1902)
- Children – 5
Jamnalal Bajaj - Early Life and Education
Jamnalal was born in an Agarwal family to Kaniram and Birdibai in 1889; he belonged to a well-to-do family and was his father's third son. Jamnalal got adopted by Seth Bachhraj and Sadibai Bachhraj (a wealthy Rajasthani merchant couple) as a grandson. They hailed from Rajasthan but lived in Wardha, Maharashtra, and Seth was a distant relative of his father's side.
Jamnalal's adoptive family took care of him and his education. Under their guidance, he joined their family business and acquired the valuable skills of trader, buying and selling, and rigorous booking keeping.
Jamnalal Bajaj – Bajaj Group
Jamnalal founded Bajaj Group in the 1920s, and it is one of the largest and oldest Indian multinational conglomerates. Bajaj's headquarters is in Mumbai, Maharashtra, and it has 34 companies under its flagship. The company's turnover is more than $280 billion, and some of its notable companies are as follows:
- Bajaj Electricals
- Mukand Ltd.
- Bajaj Auto Ltd.
- Hercules Hoists Ltd.
- Bajaj Hindustan Ltd.
- Bajaj Holding & Investment Ltd.
Jamnalal Bajaj – Politics
Jamnalal got greatly influenced by the values and teachings of Mahatma Gandhi. It helped him gain interest in politics, and he joined the freedom fight against the Britishers. As a result, Bajaj got elected as the Nagpur sessions' reception committee chairman in 1920.
Bajaj also got conferred with the title of Raj Bahadur by the Britishers in 1921 and joined the non-co-operation movement. He earned national admiration by getting detained by the British force for participation in the flag satyagraha in 1923. Bajaj also became the president of Gandhi Seva Sangha and got elected as a member of the Congress Working Committee in 1933.
Jamnalal Bajaj – Social Work & Philanthropy
Jamnalal always took part in various social initiatives. Some of them are as follows:
- He fought for the removal of untouchability.
- He promoted Hindi, Khadi, and Village industries. He also toured across the country to promote Khadi and played an instrumental role in publishing Hindi books and magazines.
- He became president of the All India Hindi Sahitya Sammelan (literary convention) that promoted the Hindi language in India to unite every Indian.
- Bajaj also got chosen as the treasurer of the All-India Spinners Association.
- He founded Dakshin Bharat Hindi Prachar Sabha, started Sasta Sahitya Mandal, and initiated Gandhi Pustak Bhandar.
- Bajaj was the first treasurer of Jamia Milia Islamia's Managing Committee.
- He also served as the Jaipur Rajya Praja Mandal chief and negotiated between the Maharajas of Jaipur and Sikar.
Jamnalal Bajaj – Differences with Gandhi
Jamnalal distanced from Gandhi because of Congress's contesting 1938's legislative elections. Although Congress also decided to make him the President of Haripura Session (that Gandhi personally approved), Bajaj passed the honor to Subhas Chandra Bose.
Jamnalal Bajaj – Legacies
Some of the legacies of Jamnalal are as follows:
- Jamnalal has many institutes in his names, such as Jamanalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies and several others.
- A locality in the sub-urban Andheri, Mumbai, was named after him.
- He also has a Jamanalal Bajaj Foundation for philanthropic work.
- Awards are given every year (Jamanalal Bajaj Award) on his birth anniversary.
Jamnalal Bajaj – The Honorary Man
Jamnalal Bajaj was a man with multiple talents. He was born with leadership qualities, and this is something that not everyone possesses. Jamnalal worked his entire life to uplift society and built a huge company that employs lakhs of people in India. He was a visionary man, and his life is an inspiration for all of us.