Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Thursday, Jul 18, 2002
Corporate - Trends
Bajaj mediators may not get down to work now
PUNE, July 17
EVEN as the four Bajaj seniors have decided to keep off the press till the family dispute is solved amicably, sources close to the family today indicated that it could be another month before the two mediators are finalised.
Confirming the names of Mr Sharad Pawar, and long-time family friend, Mr Dhirubhai Mehta, as the proposed consensus candidates, the sources said, "Both parties however have to agree to the terms of reference before they are appointed and this will in all likelihood take another month.''
The sources maintained that the four Bajaj seniors including Mr Rahul Bajaj himself, Mr Madhur Bajaj, Mr Shekhar Bajaj and Mr Niraj Bajaj, have decided to keep away from the press.
Meanwhile, the Bajaj family members, barring the warring brother Shishir and his son Kushagra, continue to flock together.
"The family takes pride in the fact that, barring the Godrej family, they are the only Indian business family that has remained together up to the fourth generation and consider that to be an achievement by itself,'' family sources said.
The family has decided to keep details of the dispute within its fold in an effort to "prevent things from deteriorating and to keep communication channels open with the other side", the sources said.
The family is not particularly perturbed by the fact that one of its members wants to go his way but the rest of them are determined to stay together, they added.
Volumes remain low
Our Mumbai Bureau reports: Meanwhile, the Bajaj Auto share remained almost flat today even as volumes in the counter continued to be low.
The share ended 1.18 per cent lower at Rs 504.35 with a volume of 30,435 shares on the BSE. On the NSE, the share closed 1.97 per cent lower at Rs 501.90 with a volume of 40,903 shares.
After the Bajaj family issues were reported in the media, volumes in the Bajaj Auto counter have almost dried up. This has caused concern among market players as a number of institutional investors have bought shares of the auto major.
Volumes have fallen from an average of over one lakh shares each on BSE and NSE to around 30,000 shares each on these two exchanges.
Market players however said the on-going family crisis is unlikely to impact on the operations of the company. They also ruled out any chance of Mr Shishir Bajaj selling his stake in Bajaj Auto.
"There is no concern over the share price relating to the Bajaj family issues. The company has been doing well over the last one year; the outlook also look bright,'' said an analyst.
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