Jagdish Khattar, an IAS officer of the UP cadre, had joined Maruti Udyog as an officer on special duty in 1992.(Photo: Mint)
Jagdish Khattar, an IAS officer of the UP cadre, had joined Maruti Udyog as an officer on special duty in 1992.(Photo: Mint)

Former Maruti Suzuki India MD Jagdish Khattar dies at 78

Khattar’s career also mirrored that of Maruti’s chairman RC Bhargava, who was also an IAS officer, but resigned to join Maruti permanently in the mid-1980s.
By Malyaban Ghosh, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON APR 27, 2021 07:13 AM IST

Jagdish Khattar, the former managing director of Maruti Udyog (Maruti Suzuki India Ltd), breathed his last on Monday. He was 78.

Khattar, an IAS officer of the Uttar Pradesh cadre, had joined Maruti as an officer on special duty (OSD) in 1992 and became its director of sales and marketing operations. In 1999, he was promoted as the joint managing director of the company at a time when Maruti was dealing with several problems.

Khattar’s career also mirrored that of Maruti’s chairman RC Bhargava, who was also an IAS officer, but resigned to join Maruti permanently in the mid-1980s.

Khattar oversaw Maruti’s operations during one of the most challenging periods in its history and successfully represented the auto industry’s demands for changes in regulations and taxation structure before the government via the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (Siam).

The most significant decision taken by Khattar during his stint in Maruti was to establish its insurance, used car and accessories businesses, which are successful ventures, providing a separate source of revenue for Maruti’s dealers.

Khattar retired from Maruti in 2007 and started his own venture, Carnation Auto, a multi-brand automobile services platform. His stint as an entrepreneur, though, ended on a sour note as the project failed.

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