Veteran stock market investor and Indian billionaire Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, nicknamed India’s own Warren Buffett, died on August 14 in the city of Mumbai, the Press Trust of India news agency reported. He was 62 years old.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi led the tributes to the business tycoon, who had an estimated net worth of $5.8 billion, according to Forbes.
“Rakesh Jhunjhunwala was indomitable. Full of life, witty and insightful, he leaves behind an indelible contribution to the world of finance,” Modi tweeted, also expressing his condolences to Jhunjhunwala’s family.
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His cause of death has not yet been released, although he was said to be suffering from various health problems, local media reported.
Jhunjhunwala, a chartered accountant from the northern state of Rajasthan, started investing in the stock market while still in college, starting with a capital of just 5,000 rupees ($63). He established and managed RARE Enterprises, an asset management company. As his net worth steadily increased, he became one of the richest men in India with investments in some of the country’s largest companies.
In his latest venture, he helped launch the low-cost Akasa Air, which made its first flight last week. Jhunjhunwala was seen at the launch in a wheelchair, local media reported.
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The airline said it was “deeply saddened” by the news of his death. “We at Akasa cannot thank Jhunjhunwala enough for being an early believer in us and placing his trust and faith in us to build a world-class airline,” he said in a statement.
Also called the “Big Bull” of the country’s Bombay Stock Exchange, Jhunjhunwala was known for taking risks in the market and in his investments.
“Investor, bold risk taker, masterful understanding of stock market,” tweeted Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, calling him a “leader in his own right” who believed strongly in India’s strength and growth.
In an interview last week with news channel CNBC-TV18, Jhunjhunwala said that despite unfavorable economic conditions worldwide, “the Indian market will grow, but at a slower pace.”
He is survived by his wife and three children.
This article was first published by MarketWatch, a title of the Dow Jones Group