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Ambani kin hopes dust settles soon

Joydeep Ray & Piyush Pandey in Ahmedabad | November 25, 2004 09:46 IST

Vimal Ramnikbhai Ambani, nephew of Reliance Industries doyen Dhirubhai, finds nothing unusual in the talk of 'ownership issues' at India's largest private sector company.

The first Ambani after Mukesh to talk on it, he's philosophical. "It happens in almost every family and between husbands and wives in India. But if the matter is resolved amicably at the earliest it is good for the family and everyone else," Vimal, told Business Standard.

The son of Dhirubhai's brother Ramnikbhai -- Reliance's Vimal brand is said to be named after him -- does not figure prominently in the Reliance group and its businesses, and is director of an Ahmedabad-based company called Tower Overseas Ltd. He believes his cousins Mukesh and Anil will sort out the issues soon.

"Once they elaborately confer with their mother Kokilaben, things would be sorted out. I am confident of it."

He didn't say any further but gave an intriguing hint: "The time to talk would come only after a month." His father helped Dhirubhai set up the first textile mill of Reliance at Naroda here, spread across 120 acres, in 1966 with 68 employees and four warp knitting machines.

Ramnikbhai could not be contacted for comments either at his office or home. Meanwhile, security personnel at Vimal House, Reliance's office here, said they have been instructed not to allow any visitors inside, especially from the media.

Workers at the Naroda complex, where suitings, shirtings and home textiles are manufactured, sounded anxious about the conflict.

"Both Mukeshbhai and Anilbhai are father figures to us. We did not expect such a conflict to crop up after Dhirubhai' death. In a typical Gujarati family, all members -- even of the expanded family -- stay together and run businesses without any hitch," said a worker refusing to reveal his identity.

He said, "Anilbhai should now come forward and make a public statement too that he has no fight with his brother," the worker added.

Another worker said "Mukeshbhai has always kept in touch with us when he visits the plant. Dhirubhai had confidence that his elder son would ensure that Anilbhai will not be cheated of his rights," he said.

Another worker said: "Look, there may be some issues in the family but there is no need for the media to drum this up so much. Things will settle down soon."

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Number of User Comments: 1

Sub: Reliance is now a public property.

If the twosome cannot reconcile it must be nationalized, and subsequently sold to the highest bidder - and that could well be a consortium. The ...

Posted by chanakya


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