Rajiv Bajaj, the managing director of Bajaj auto, on Monday seemed to disagree with the remarks of his father, industrialist Rahul Bajaj, on the political atmosphere in the country. In an interview with Economic Times, Rajiv Bajaj said a “durbar” to his father “is like a red carpet to a bull”.
Admitting that his father had been courageous and people admired him for the quality, Rajiv Bajaj said he had read somewhere that “courage is knowing that it may hurt and doing it anyway. Stupidity is the same. And that’s what makes life hard”. He added that this was often the reason why people cheered for the Bajaj Group chairperson, but only from the sidelines.
Rajiv Bajaj also said personally, he was not sure of the “relevance of raising such a sensitive and subjective issue at a public function to celebrate corporate excellence”.
He added that he had his issues with the government, especially on crucial issues like the electric vehicle policy, but it had “rarely left a poor taste”.
On Saturday, at an Economic Times event that also saw Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Railways and Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal in attendance, Rahul Bajaj had said: “Nobody from our industrialist friends will speak, I will say openly… An environment will have to be created… When UPA II was in power, we could criticise anyone… You (the government) are doing good work, but despite that we don’t have the confidence that you will appreciate if we criticise you openly (Aap achchha kaam kar rahe hain, uske baad bhi, hum aapko criticise openly karein, confidence nahin hai ki you will appreciate).”
This evoked a response from Shah, who said there was no need to fear but if Bajaj felt so, then “we will have to make an effort to improve the atmosphere”.
The exchange left social media divided. While many lauded the industrialist, his critics said the very fact he said what he did proved his observations were without any basis.