How Baniyas Do Business


Baniya—a derivative of the Sanskrit word Vanij, is a term synonymous with India’s trader class. Over the decades, these capitalists spread their footprint across vast sectors of the economy from steel and mining to telecom and retail. And now even e-tail.

Nikhil Inamdar’s Rokda features the stories of a few pioneering men from this mercantile community—Radheshyam Agarwal and Radheshyam Goenka, founders of the cosmetic major Emami; Rohit Bansal, co-founder of Snapdeal; Neeraj Gupta, founder of Meru Cabs; and V.K. Bansal, a humble mathematics tutor whose genius spawned a massive coaching industry in Kota—amongst others.

Through the triumphs and tribulations of these men in the epoch marking India’s entire post independence struggle with entrepreneurship—from the License Raj to the opening up of the floodgates in 1991, and the dawn of the digital era—Rokda seeks to uncover the indomitable spirit of the Baniya.


256 Pages | ISBN13 9788184005899
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Nikhil Inamdar
Nikhil Inamdar

Nikhil Inamdar is a Mumbai based financial journalist. He was a prime time news presenter with NDTV Profit and worked for several years as a television correspondent at other reputed news channels after completing a postgraduate degree in broadcast journalism from the UK. He is currently consultant columnist at Business Standard Online. This is his first book.

Nikhil can be reached on email at
Twitter handle - @nik_inamdar

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