There are many who wished to read controversial unauthorized biography of Dhirubhai Ambani, The Polyester Prince by Hamish McDonald. But the book never saw the light of the day in India.
Not any more. The Polyester Prince will soon hit the book stores in India as Ambani & Sons, the updated book on the life of Dhirubhai Ambani.
A quick recap for many who missed some action. Hamish McDonald is a no nonsense Australian author and journalist. He portrayed Dhirubhai Ambani in a black and white canvas as a result the book has all the good, the bad and the scandalous part of his life in the most unbiased manner.
Naturally when Ambani house came to know about it, they threaten the author to sue him if The Polyester Prince releases in India. As a consequence the book was only released in Australia. But such was the craze for this book that non resident Indian and others were ready to pay $300 on Amazon.com to buy this book. Also in Mumbai pirated copy of The Polyester Prince is sold till date. Even I own the one.
The author describes Mr.Dhirubai as a ruthless manipulator. People used to hush hush about him but no one dare to come in open. He was bigger than any system, press and law. Such were his contacts and aura of fear that he could bring downfall of stock exchange, a government or press media. Hamish writes that people refuse to talk about him or reliance as they have to live in India.
Keeping his larger than life image aside, the author takes us to the journey of a billionaire in making and also try to understand the two sides of Dhirubhai personality. He also analyses the various traits of Dhirubhai’s personality which makes him as we know today.
Hamish has carved the image of young Dhirubhai has a enthusiastic and intelligent boy who is strongly influenced by Sardar Vallabbhai Patel and was actively involved in the freedom movement in Junagadh.
The sparks of persuasiveness could be seen in him from a young age which later on made him a great manipulator of Indian business history.
One of the greatest quality of Dhirubhai is to easily mingle with people, builds relationships and also maintains them. He was a great friends a reason why everyone wants to be his friends. As a result, Dhirubhai has friends in political parties, government officials, corporate executives, banking heads, underworld dons, journalists and where not helped him to climb one success step after another.
According to Dhirubhai Ambani, there is no permanent friend or enemy in the world. One need to identify the self interest of the person to win them on your side.
Author has given a very intensive and extensive details of Dhirubhai and Relinace Industries right from the scratch to its zenith. Dhirubhai started his business during License Raj. He has a knack to find loopholes in the government policies and rule and where there was no such scope there he used to bend rules by distributing suitcases. With the power of money and his impeccable persona doubled with his great management skills, Dhirubhai and Reliance reached new heights every year.
After reading Vir Sanghi’s Men of Steel with one story on Nusli Wadia, I was so much interested to know the details of rivalry between Nusli Wadia and Ambanis. Well, The Polyester Prince did cover the rivalry and bitter war between the two.
Verdict: It is a must read book whether you idolize Dhirubhai nor not. It is a tale of a man of his journey from rags to riches whatever mean he used to reach there.