R C Bhargava’s journey from IAS officer to Maruti Suzuki chairman

Daijiworld Media Network – New Delhi (MS) 

New Delhi, Feb 24: R C Bhargava, the chairman of Maruti Suzuki, India's largest and most selling automobile manufacturer, is a former IAS officer who resigned from his position to undertake a government assignment that turned into a global success story. 

In 1982, the Indian government tasked V Krishnamurthy and R C Bhargava with finding a company capable of manufacturing affordable cars for Indian citizens. Upon meeting with the owner of Suzuki company in Japan, Osamu Suzuki, they were warmly welcomed. In a 2015 interview, Osamu Suzuki credited R C Bhargava for Maruti's remarkable success. 


Bhargava, a distinguished alumnus of Doon School, excelled academically, topping Allahabad University in 1950. A talented sportsman, he played squash, cricket, and table tennis.

After graduating, Bhargava topped the IAS batch of 1956 and served in various roles, including as secretary in the ministry of water and power. However, he found his work at the cabinet secretariat unfulfilling, prompting his decision to resign from the IAS after 25 years of service and join Maruti Suzuki in 1981.

Even during his tenure as an IAS officer, Bhargava was deputed to Maruti for a year. When the government declined to extend his deputation, he left the company due to the low salary of an IAS officer, which was Rs 2250 at the time.

At 89, Bhargava remains the chairman of Maruti Suzuki, drawing an annual salary of Rs 1.5 crore. He has been honoured with the Padma Bhushan, India's third highest civilian award, and continues to actively engage in golf, residing in Noida.


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