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Jamnagar bash sees high-power gathering

March 17, 2008 10:13 IST
Easily the biggest high-power gathering and by far the starriest event staged in Gujarat, concluded at the Reliance petro township in Jamnagar on Sunday.

Infosys' CEO Nandan Nilekani, ICICI Managing Director and CEO K V Kamath, Bharti Group Chairman Sunil Mittal, Mahindra & Mahindra chief Anand Mahindra, Godrej Group CMD Adi Godrej and Vikram S Mehta, chairman of the Shell Group of Companies in India were there on the the invitation of Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani, for a rare meeting under the banner of the Young Presidents' Organisation (YPO).

More than 200 YPO members, all below the age of 55, joined in seminars and meetings that would have naturally discussed business. But none of them were willing to talk about the three-day retreat as they left for home this afternoon. Nobel laureate and former US vice president Al Gore, who was invited, did not make it.

Among those who did make it were Temasek India Advisors MD Manish Kejriwal, Avatar Investment Management's India advisor Pashupati Advani, JM Financial chief Nimesh Kampani, and Pramit Jhaveri, managing director, Citigroup Global Markets.

Young guns Neeraj Bajaj, Pranav Adani and Prashant Ruia were at the event and Anand and Vivek Jain, friends and close associates of Mukesh Ambani were also there.

Over the three days, the business leaders and their spouses were housed at a hotel in the township and many bungalows were converted into guest houses. They travelled to Jamnagar on chartered jets and were escorted about in a fleet of Mercedes limousines.

A mammoth dome was erected inside the township for the event. It is believed that Rs 6 crore (Rs 60 million) was spent on the dome alone. Among some political bigwigs who were there were Union Petroleum Minister Murli Deora and his son Milind Deora, who is a Congress member of parliament, and Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel.

Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, who was invited, made a presentation on India Unlimited. Sudhir Mankand, chairman, Gujarat International Finance Tec-City (GIFT), had an opportunity to showcase the potential of the Rs 63,700 crore (Rs 637 billion) project.

Even Bollywood's big guns Shah Rukh Khan and Karan Johar were there to entertain the guests as were Kareena Kapoor and Katrina Kaif. Vinod Khanna and son Rahul Khanna participated along with Juhi Chawla and her businessman husband Jay Mehta.

Mukesh Ambani addressed the concluding session and many of the guests took a trip to the Dwarka temple later in the evening.

BS Reporter in Ahmedabad
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