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Manu Chandaria

The king of the African business jungle. Pravasi Bharatiya Samman

india Updated: Jan 17, 2003 14:55 IST

Manu Chandaria doesn't like to be labelled as a non-resident Indian.

True, the chief of the privately owned diversified conglomerate Comcraft Group lives in Kenya. But he says those hailing from India, wherever they are, should regard themselves simply as Indians always thinking of ways to help India.

"You don't know how happy I feel when I am in India...with my own people," the soft-spoken Chandaria told IANS in an interview during his visit here for the diaspora convention.

"We (the people of Indian origin) always try to link our stories and network skills and performances for beneficial growth."

Chandaria, 71, isn't just purveyor of everything Indian, he is passionate about them. And yet when it comes to doing business in India, the man - who has been hailed as the king of the African business jungle - doesn't hide his anguish over the way overseas investors are treated in the country.

"There are so many dead rules and regulations in the country. The environment where investors have freedom to operate is not there. Nobody seems to bother why investors are not coming.

"Investment environment in the globalized world has to be very competitive. Investors will go to places where business is easily done and solutions are found instantaneously," he said.

First Published: Jan 15, 2003 13:37 IST