Ashok Hinduja, one of the Fab Four of the Hinduja Group, believes the GST bill will make India an attractive destination for foreign investments. The man, who co-leads one of the biggest Indian business groups, believes that GST will unify the fragmented market, and this will lend the Indian manufacturing sector a competitive edge.
The youngest of the four Hinduja brothers, he has lent his name to the group’s flagship company, Ashok Leyland, a name synonymous with heavy vehicles in India. Based in Mumbai, he looks after the Hinduja Group India Limited (HGIL), the Group’s Indian diversified businesses, viz., finance & banking, transport, energy, information technology, media and communications.
The Hinduja Group acquired Ashok Leyland in 1987, in the group’s first foray into India. It is now India’s second largest HCV (Heavy Commerical Vehicles) builder. Ashok Leyland rules over a large export market, that includes over 65% market share in Sri Lanka.
The Hinduja Group, whose net worth is $25 billion by the 2012 estimates, has forayed into defence systems, known as Ashok Leyland Defence Systems (ALDS). It has a mandate to design and develop defence logistics and tactical vehicles, defence communication and other systems.
Ashok Hinduja, the Mumbai-based tycoon, known as AP in his circles, has been driving the Group’s growth and diversification in India since it re-entered the country in the mid-80s. The youngest to join his family business, Ashok Hinduja rubs shoulders with the world’s who’s who, and yet remain true to his ingenious roots. He is a man who can afford the best world’s best things on his whims, but prefers to stay away from tea, aerated water, or alcohol. He is blue-blooded vegan too.
Coming back to GST, Ashok Hinduja believes that GDP will help India in curbing inflation, thus improving productivity and transparency. He believes, “Elimination of tax cascading is expected to place the economy in the growth trajectory of 8% and above with seamless flow of goods and services.”