The sudden demise of Dainik Bhaskar’s chairman Ramesh Chandra Agarwal came as a shock to the media industry. Working relentlessly over a period of four decades, Agarwal created a multi-media empire with a strong foothold across print, radio and digital. Under his guidance, Bhaskar not only informed its readers of the most significant international and national developments but also turned itself into a company with a turnover of over Rs 1,000 crore.
Expressing his shock at the sudden demise of Ramesh Chandra Agarwal, Rajat Sharma, Chairman & Editor-in-Chief, India TV said, “The news of Sh. Ramesh Agarwal’s untimely and sudden demise has left a huge void in the world of media. It is a matter of personal loss for all of us in the fraternity. I deeply mourn his death and my thoughts are with his family in this hour of grief. May his soul rest in peace.”
Prasoon Joshi Chairman, McCann Worldgroup, Asia Pacific, stated, “It’s a loss for not just the Bhaskar group and family but for the industry. His vision and value system will live on.”
“Ramesh Chandra Agarwal was a great person, he understood media really well,” said senior journalist Shravan Garg. Describing the deceased septuagenarian as a “risk taker,” he recounted the manner in which Agarwal launched new editions in Rajasthan where there was already a dominant market leader.
According to Garg, Agarwal’s forte was that he refused to accept defeat and hired able people to take Bhaskar forward. “He was a big risk taker. He did not care for losses,” Garg remarked adding that he showcased qualities unseen in media proprietors.
Mentioning that Agarwal asked him to be part of Bhaskar’s Delhi edition at the turn of the century, former Outlook editor Alok Mehta commended him for having succeeded at taking the newspaper across the country following its humble origins in Bhopal.
“He was an institution in Hindi journalism,” stated Mehta adding that his “vision, sincerity and hard work” will be remembered with awe and shall find an indelible space in the history of Indian journalism.
Praising Agarwal family’s late patriarch, India News’ managing editor Rana Yashwant noted that Agarwal took journalism to new heights. “The courageous step which Bhaskar took by questioning the authorities and establishment in the interest of the common man could not have been possible without the independent thinking of Ramesh Agarwal and his sense of responsibility towards the country,” said Yashwant.
Anurradha Prasad, chairperson and managing director of B.A.G. Films & Media Limited commenting on the passing away of the media baron, said, “He was a doyen of Indian media. (This is a) Big loss to our fraternity.”
Former director general of Doordarshan & All India Radio Archana Datta commented, “It is a great loss to the media world. DB moved from strength to strength under his leadership.”
Yesterday, Agarwal complained of unease at Ahmedabad airport. Thereafter, he was rushed to Apollo Hospital where he was declared dead due to a cardiac arrest. He is survived by his three sons, Sudhir Agarwal, Girish Agarwal and Pawan Agarwal. They are all involved in the family business as directors of DB Corp Ltd.