“There is no greater blessing than a family hand that lifts you from a fall, but there is no lower curse than a family hand that strikes you down.” – Slightly modified quote of Wes Fesler
Karma Inc. headquarters around the globe were few of the most marvellous office complexes. Built in the form of various mathematical symbols, each one had its own distinguish character while carrying a natural resemblance. In India, the country of Aryabhata, it was in the shape of Pi.
47 storey LEED- Platinum certified building in the heart of Kolkata, was the testimony of the level of perfection Sanskar Maheshwari demands from his work
47 storey LEED- Platinum certified building in the heart of Kolkata, was the testimony of the level of perfection Sanskar Maheshwari demands from his work. It had twin towers, each with 47 floors, connected on the top most floor to form the Pi shape. The rooftop of the building hosted a helipad while the connected floor had an indoor garden. Based on the modern contemporary architecture, it was built with fine glass and pure white marble. While the interior of the building was designed in classic black and white theme its exterior was totally black. She was a fervent supporter of environmental conservation and sustainable development so this building and all other offices of Karma were a tribute to her cause. This building had its own solar power station, rainwater harvesting plant, sewage treatment plant and waste management plant. 65% of its area was open to trim down the necessity of air-conditioning. Park around the building was surrounded by the trees. 90 percent of its energy need gets fulfilled by solar energy while 87% of the water it used to get recycled through rainwater harvesting. All the greenery was maintained by a top-notch automated irrigation system which makes use of treated water.
Sanskar Maheshwari’s office was located on the 45th floor of wing-A. It was connected to the ground floor through a private lift which was only accessible to Sanskar and Josh. Nobody was allowed in his office apart from Josh. Meetings and client interaction are done in a conference room which was on the 39th floor. His personal attendees i.e. lovers and friends can meet him on the 40th floor. All the floors upward were allocated to the executive heads of different departments. 46th floor had a penthouse apartment which was his residence in India. Nobody was allowed on the 46th floor, not even Josh.
Standing on the balcony of his office Sanskar Maheshwari’s eyes were fixed on the horizon. It had been 6 months for Sanskar in India today. His deal with Mehra was a success which had increased his stakes in Maheshwari Industries to 23 percent and with the open market purchase of Maheshwari stocks, his position in Maheshwari group has reached as much as 27 percent making his biggest individual shareholder in Maheshwari Industries. Maheshwaris had 25 percent holding in the company while Gadodias had a 10 percent stake in Maheshwari Industries. He knew that if the time comes Gadodia will vote for Maheshwari as they were close friends from generations and with the rumours of the impending engagement of Lakshya-Ragini, it was clear that they were moving towards a merger. This merger was the biggest blow to his perfectly laid plans. He had contemplated this move. Aware of Ragini’s adoration for his cousin, he was not astounded with this turn, but he hadn’t thought this would affect his plan in any way as he was positive that he would be able to get required shares without disrupting Ragini and Lakshya’s wedding.
He had 10 months before next annual general meeting of Maheshwari group and he had thought that in next 6 months he would be able to cajole S&S board to sell their stakes in Maheshwaris to Karma, with a 22 percent stake in Maheshwaris and 30 percent stake in Gadodias, S&S was the biggest stakeholder in Maheshwari and Gadodia firms combined, getting their stakes was the easiest way to climb up in the ladder for Sanskar.
His surmise concerning S&S was indeed true, holding entity of S&S was a trust, not a non-profit organisation as it was perceived by them, though it operated as an NPO. The trust had been set up by the will of its former partner 21 years back. Before coming to India he had thought that he would be able to get S&S stakes easily, but 6 months of research on S&S Sons had proved all his projections wrong. S&S had some very complicated M&A guidelines which had effectively quashed all his aspirations of acquiring S&S. To have any merger with them he needed the consent of non-executive chairperson and major shareholder. While his research had proved that both the person were same he had failed to gain any major details about that person, their non-executive chairperson had retired from active business 20 years ago and the dividend which the trust was qualified was redirected to a number of charitable organisations. He had employed the best detectives, bribed people in the higher management of S&S, reported regulators, did everything in his capacity but he couldn’t get a single detail about the chairperson. S&S was a private limited company with its 95% of stocks being held by a trust fund which had made his task even more complicated, there was no way he could pressurise regulators for disclosing the identity of the person and wooing rest of the stakeholders was useless as their stake in the company were insignificant.
Left with no other option he had decided to buy the stakes from the market. Yesterday he had a meeting with few brokers who had promised to buy the required shares for him within a month. This purchase of stock was not the permanent solution but it was a positive move as after this purchase he would be major stakeholders of Maheshwari Group who couldn’t be challenged without the help of S&S stock. He had decided to buy stocks as his personal investment, he didn’t want to involve Karma in this matter at this level
Sanskar was so deeply engrossed in thoughts that he couldn’t even hear the door opening sound. it was only when Josh called him aloud that he came out of his thoughts. Josh had come there to give him some files regarding a new contract. “Josh, when did you come in?” Sanskar inquired startled, hearing his name being pronounced. “I was calling out for you for quite some time, where were you lost Sanskar?” asked Josh.
“Nothing I was just contemplating our next move. Have you prepared the bidding documents for Birla Group Project?” Sanskar asked Josh coming back to senses, Josh had no idea about his revenge game and he had no interest in telling anyone what he was going to start.
“Yes these are the documents, but I am not sure why we are quoting such a huge amount, this contract is not much significant,” Josh said passing the file to Sanskar, he was not sure why his always calculative boss was hell bent on getting this contract at any cost. He had already increased the bid to double in the initial round of bidding and with today’s proposal, he was increasing it to a level where this contract had left no scope for profit.
Sanskar was aware of it, but he also knew one thing that nobody knew. Birlas were close associates of Maheshwaris for decades but these days things were not good between them. Lakshya’s marriage, apparently, GD Birla had asked Lakshya’s hand for his one and only daughter Kiara which Durgaprasad Maheshwari had denied flatly leaving Mr Birla humiliated. Lakshya- Ragini’s engagement rumours had only increased this humiliation. Sanskar knew that Maheshwari-Birla relation was hanging by the thinnest thread, slight push and he would be able to get Birla’s by his side, This deal was that push which would put an end to their association. Birla’s were Sanskar’s biggest target after Mehra’s in Maheshwari camp, While Mehras were the biggest outside stakeholders in Maheshwari group, Birlas were their biggest client in India.
Birla’s were Sanskar’s biggest target after Mehra’s in Maheshwari camp, While Mehras were the biggest outside stakeholders in Maheshwari group, Birlas were their biggest client in India
On the outskirts of the city, the magnificent Maheshwari House was preparing itself for biggest news of the year. For ages, Maheshwari house was the undisputed power centre of Kolkata social circuit as well as the Indian business world. Any information coming from Maheshwari house was bound to make front page news. The presence of Gadodia family had only increased the anticipation of media and business and social world alike. While the business world was waiting for the confirmation of the rumours of the merger. Social media was painting the walls red. From morning itself news channels were Ragini – Lakshya’s supposed love story like some fairytale giving young girl major romance goals.
If the atmosphere outside the house was too heated up with the media waiting for the announcement with bated breath, the environment inside the house was no different.
While Durga Prasad and Suchitra Maheshwari were extremely happy with the alliance, same couldn’t be said for the other family members.
Durga Prasad Maheshwari was jubilant with his relation as this alliance was going to strengthen his position in Maheshwari Industries and Ragini was like a daughter to him whom he was more than willing to accept as a daughter in law. She was everything he had wished in his daughter in law, beautiful, classy, well mannered, belong to a well-respected family, and rich unlike his eldest daughter in law whom he had accepted only for the fact that she was his beloved son and heir apparent’s, love. He knew that this was the best time for the announcement as Maheshwari stocks were quite high after a long time which meant that the decision would be taken as a family affair instead of a business deal. Though everyone inside and outside the company was thinking that the company was back on track, his old eyes were able to that it was the silence before the strom. He knew that something was very wrong, so this announcement his answer to the unknown force who was waiting patiently to wreck the havoc.
Suchitra Maheshwari, his wife was also extremely ecstatic with this alliance as she was like a second mother to Ragini after Sharmishtha. Suchitra was especially fond of her quite but strong character which always reminded her of her own self. Suchitra though the quietest was an integral part of the large Maheshwari family, she was an invisible rope that had made sure that family remain together in front of the world, if not in real. When Sanskar had decided to give up on his family name and Inheritance, it was Suchitra’s clever cajoling that had suppressed that open mutiny and when Siddhant became adamant to marry Ria, it was Suchitra’s timely intervention that made it possible without any bloodbath in the family. Suchitra hoped that Ragini would play the same role in the family which she was playing for ages.
Sugandha and Vikrant were not too keen about this alliance but their reasons for disinterest were totally different. While Sugandha had still not forgiven the elder Maheshwari for what he had done to her beloved son, Vikrant was not too sure about Lakshya’s feelings towards Ragini. Knowing fully well what a forced marriage could do to a person, he didn’t want his nephew to go through what he had gone.
There is always a time in your life when you don’t understand what you should feel, you wish to feel happy but deep down you know that you can’t feel that way, no matter how hard you try to feel the happiness but it don’t reach your heart, you love someone with all your heart but it doesn’t define your existence. You wish best for a person but when their interest starts conflicting with yours, your prayers loose their meaning. Same was the case with Siddhant, though he loved Ragini like an elder brother, he was not able to feel the happiness he should have felt. This alliance was the clear indicator of his doomed future in Maheshwari Group. He knew it well that there in no ways shrewd Shekhar Gadodia would allow his Daughter to be married without assurance of her husband being the MD of the company. This knowledge was as painful for him as fact that his family hadn’t accepted his beloved wife.
Ria Maheshwari never understood what was her fault that she never got the acceptance in Maheshwari household, it was not her fault that she was an orphan, she hadn’t chosen that tag for herself. Today, after seeing the happiness of her in-laws while announcing the engagement, she couldn’t help but feel bitter. She never asked them to love her the way they loved Ragini, she just wished for bit acceptance but guess they didn’t have anything to give an orphan. She loved Ragini as a sister, because she was the only person other than Lakshya who had accepted her as a part of the family and today when she was officially becoming her sister in law, she was nothing but happy for the young girl, but same time she was jealous as well seeing the love they were bestowing upon her.
While each mind in Maheshwari house has it’s own reason for being happy or sad with this announcement, there was someone who didn’t know how to feel about it. Interestingly that someone was the one whose life was going to be affected most by this announcement. Lakshya Maheshwari was more confused today than he ever been in his life. He knew he liked Ragini a lot and she was his Baccha but today when this announcement was happening he was not sure if he would be able to give his hundred percent to this relationship. He had no say in this marriage as This decision was important for the company. He had said yes thinking that Ragini was his best friend and he would find love eventually in this marriage. But after meeting that pixie every second he was comparing Ragini with her. She had everything he wanted to see in his wife which he had realised after meeting her. Her cute antics, her innocence, her bubbliness, her kindness her always happy and fun behaviour had made him realised what was missing in Ragini. In the whole press conference, he was just looking at Ragini comparing her with her.
The announcement of was a major shock to both business world who were waiting for the merger news as well as page3. No one had thought that Durga Prasad Maheshwari will announce both the engagement and merger together. It had created a havoc in Dalal Street with Maheshwari share price going all time high.
Watching the announcement live in his penthouse Sanskar couldn’t help say “Well played Bade Papa, Now it’s my turn.”
I know you people want to kill me for such late update but I was depressed and didn’t have anything in me to write. please do provide the feedback good bad ugly. it means a lot to me. link for the previous chapter is here. Do check the chapter in Wattpad as I have provided some images which are not possible here.