Shafqat Hussain’s body is taken away from a prison in Karachi Pakistan on Tuesday executed a man convicted of murdering a child, brushing aside a storm of protests from rights groups that his confession had been extracted by torture and he was a minor at the time of the crime. …Read More »
The wealthy come in a myriad different guises – Gopichand Hinduja looks like the unmarried uncle everyone ignores; Lalit Modi looks like a character from the Indian version of ‘Only Fools and Horses’ whilst Narayan Murthy looks like a bored tax collector on the verge of retirement.
Appearances, however, are never more deceiving than in the case of the rich.
If there is one characteristic that all rich and powerful people share it is their ruthlessness - a single-minded determination to succeed, often at any cost.
Few British Asian tycoons embody that aggression – literally and metaphorically – than Dr Diwan Rahul Nanda, the imposing Chief Executive of the international security solutions provider Topsgrup.
Prior to making his name in Britain, Dr Nanda - the martial arts-loving son of an Indian army major - had already made a name for himself in India, from providing security “solutions” to Bollywood stars and Mumbai’s most iconic landmarks to living Mumbai’s famous ‘Page 3 Lifestyle’ (an allusion to the city's party lifestyle as opposed the British version of the same).
In 2008, he burst on to Britain’s conscience with the audacious takeover of the Shield Guarding Company, one of the UK's oldest security companies.
The flamboyant Dr Nanda’s entry into Britain’s staid old security business caused a minor storm – an ambitious young tycoon from Mumbai who worked hard, partied harder and with a penchant for expensive wheels from Crewe, squaring up against an industry which still resembles the dark and brooding Cold War-era world depicted in John le Carre’s novels.
It's the result, according to Dr Nanda, of being in possession of "balls of steel".
'The name's Nanda. Diwan Rahul Nanda.' The tycoon with one of his numerous toys from the storied factories of Crewe. "5 DRN" is a clue to the number of toys. The thrusting, masculine Bentley was, of course, the original 007's great love before Sean Connery decided to adopt the more "elegant" Aston Martin DB5. The wheel arches on the Bentley appear to match Dr Nanda's much-worked biceps.
In 2012, Dr Nanda also made it to the Sunday Times Rich List with a net worth of £168 million, a figure that is significantly higher today, although it’s a bit hit-and-miss to gauge exactly, certainly even for the Times.
"I have little inclination of my 'wealth'", Dr Nanda says. "My money is tied up in the business".
Today the companies he controls provide security solutions – everything from men at the gate to risk assessments and high tech surveillance - to clients such as IBM, Apple, Pepsi, the Tata Group and the Indian Premier League (IPL).
The 44-year-old Mumbaikar’s journey, from running a small Chinese takeaway in his hometown to winning entrepreneurship awards in London, is all the more remarkable due his detour to Britain, where he lives in the wealthy and quaint village of Stoke Poges, Buckinghamshire - a far cry from the revelry of Park Lane and Bandra.
I caught up with Dr Nanda to talk reverse migration, security solutions, Stoke Poges, his legacy and his beloved daughters.Read More »
Days after the BBC was criticized for touting a Liverpool-born actress who appears in south Indian cinema as a “Bollywood Superstar”, the Corporation is defending itself against another embarrassing editorial oversight. The Beeb was forced to apologize on Saturday after an impostor waltzed through multiple BBC channels posing as a …Read More »
A Pakistani man from Rochdale has been sentenced to 14 years in prison for stabbing his wife 15 times because she wanted to learn English. Nazakat Ali, 30, stabbed his wife Shahzana Kausar following an argument over her wish to enrol at a college to study English in preparation to …Read More »
From sleep walking to being inebriated law courts across the world have heard myriad reasons for men stalking women. Bollywood, it appears, has become the latest defence. A court in the Australian state of Tasmania has heard from a man accused of stalking two women – because of Bollywood cinema. …Read More »
A classical dancer from Kerala has become the first Muslim to hold a doctorate in the ancient Indian dance form of Mohiniyattam which is traditionally the preserve of women. K M Abu has been performing Mohiniyattam for more than three decades. The classical dance form is rooted in Hindu mythology …Read More »
An Indian-born economics professor at New York’s Columbia University has been appointed to head Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s new economic planning body with the remit of mounting a Margaret Thatcher-like attack on India’s Soviet-style economic strategy. Arvind Panagariya is renowned for his market-friendly, pro-growth economics and is expected to be …Read More »
A British-Pakistani man has been charged with the murder of a woman in Lahore. Ghulam Asia, 49, was gunned down outside her home in the city on 27 July last year. Tariq Rana, 30, is accused of killing her and will be tried in the UK after being arrested in …Read More »
#BonAppetit: Man sits citizenship exam on behalf of someone else. Man EATS fake passport after being confronted.
A British-Pakistani emergency services call handler attempted to eat a fake Pakistani passport after he was caught trying to take a British citizenship test on behalf of someone else. Wasim Husain admitted he was paid £300 to sit the exam and has been jailed for eight months. West Midlands-born Husain, …Read More »
Whatever his achievements, Shiva Ayyadurai has plenty of admirers and detractors alike. He’s been variously called a ‘charlatan’, a ‘fraud’, a ‘genius’ and has received glowing endorsements by the likes of Noam Chomsky and Amitabh Bachchan. Now, after years of trying to convince techies in the US that he is …Read More »