Throwback: When Mukesh Ambani choked back tears as he described Dhirubhai Ambani suffering his first stroke

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Mukesh Ambani

Mukesh AmbaniReuters

Dhirubhai Ambani, the founder of Reliance Industries, was often termed as the most powerful man in India and was known for his willpower and dedication. He breathed his last at the Breach Candy Hospital in Mumbai on July 6, 2002. He was put on life support after he was admitted to the said hospital after he suffered a cerebral stroke on June 24, 2002. It was his second stroke.

On February 16, 1986, the business tycoon had suffered his first stroke and the day is still etched in his son Mukesh Ambani’s heart as he was there to witness all of it.

In an old interview with Simi Garewal in 2012, Mukesh, while talking about how they grew up together, shared the most emotional moment of his life when his father had suffered his first stroke.

“My father and I were watching a cricket match and suddenly he said, ‘Mukesh! My back is hurting.’ And within 5-10 seconds, he suffered his first stroke and pass out into unconsciousness. Doctors told us that the next 24 hours are critical. All of us were there round the clock. When he gained consciousness, and again as luck would have it, I was in front of him,” Mukesh Ambani had said while revisiting the tragic moment.

“He looked at me and the first thing he said, ‘Don’t worry! I will make it’,” Mukesh choked back tears as he described what had happened. After a small pause, Mukesh continued with a lump in his throat, “That shows you…the kind of…He didn’t ask where am I, what happened to me. He was more worried about eh…And I had faith in god and that’s the only thing that keeps you going. That strikes me even now. It’s indelible you know. Normally, people would worry about what happened to me and where am I, and here is this person, who says, ‘You don’t worry. I am still around for you and I’ll make it.”

After Dhirubhai Ambani‘s death, his wife Kokilaben had announced the split between Ambani brothers – Mukesh and Anil – to settle their dispute by arranging a demerger.

“With the blessings of Srinathji, I have today amicably resolved the issues between my two sons, Mukesh and Anil, keeping in mind the proud legacy of my husband Dhirubhai Ambani,” Kokilaben had issued a statement to the media about the divide in 2005. While Mukesh got the flagship Reliance Industries and IPCL, with interests in petrochemicals, oil and gas exploration, refining and textiles, Anil took control over Reliance Infocomm, Reliance Energy and Reliance Capital.





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