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Sahara India Pariwar

Sahara India Pariwar
Company typePrivate
Founded1978; 46 years ago (1978)
(Gorakhpur, India)
FounderSubrata Roy
Area served
ProductsFinancial services
Mass media and entertainment
Real Estate
Digital education
Electric vehicle
Life insurance
Artificial intelligence
Co-operative society
IT and outsourcing
Number of employees
12 lakh (includes salaried employees, consultants, field workers, agents & business associates)

Sahara India Pariwar (pariwar being Hindi for "family") is an Indian conglomerate headquartered in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India. The group operates business sectors such as finance, infrastructure & housing, real estate, sports, power, manufacturing, media & entertainment, health care, life insurance, educational institute, offline online education (edunguru), retail, E-commerce (online/offline shopping), electrical vehicle (sahara evols), hospital, artificial intelligence, hospitality, and co-operative society. The group has been a major promoter of sports in India and was the title sponsor of the Indian national cricket team, Indian national hockey team and Bangladesh national cricket team, Force India Formula One team among many other sports.[1][2]


Sahara India Pariwar was founded by Subrata Roy Sahara in 1978.[3][4] In 2004, Sahara group was termed by the Time magazine as ‘the second largest employer in India' after the Indian Railways. The group operates more than 5,000 establishments across India[5] with the employee strength around 12 lakh (both field and office) under the Sahara India umbrella.[6]

Real estate

Sahara India Real Estate Company and the Sahara Housing Investment Corporation are subsidiaries of the conglomerate. They buy and develop land for residential housing projects across India. The company has its projects spread in almost all over India.[7][8] Sahara has a collaboration with Turner Construction, an American building company, in some of its projects.[9]

Electric vehicles

Sahara India Pariwar announced the launch of Electric Vehicles under the brand name Sahara Evols in June 2019.[10][11] The product line of Sahara Evols initially consists of motorbikes, scooters, e-rickshaws and 3-wheeler cargo vehicles, charging stations and EV batteries.[12][13]


Sahara owns several professional sports teams in India in a variety of sports. In badminton, it owns the Awadhe Warriors of Lucknow, one of the eight teams in the Indian Badminton League.[14] It owned the Pune Warriors India, a franchise cricket team that played in the Indian Premier League (IPL).[15]

The company launched the Sahara Warriors Polo Team in 2012.[16] From 2005 to 2014 Calcutta Football League was sponsored by Sahara. In July 2012, Sahara India Pariwar picked up the Lucknow franchise of the Hockey India League, the Uttar Pradesh Wizards.[17] It was also the sponsor of the Bangladesh Cricket Team from 2012 to 2015.[18]

Media and entertainment

The group owns the national Hindi news channel Jain TV.[19]

The group owns Headend-in-the-sky Platform Jainhits.[20] .[21][22][23]


Grosvenor House Hotel, 1920s postcard illustration

Sahara owned a controlling stake in New York's Plaza Hotel and Dream Downtown Hotel, New York.[24][25] Sahara sold the hotel to Katara Hospitality in July 2018.[26]

In India, the group owns the "Sahara Star" hotel near Mumbai's Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport.


Sahara has interests in insurance and asset management. Sahara India Life Insurance Company Ltd.- has been granted licence by the insurance regulator – the IRDAI on 6 February 2004. With this approval, Sahara India Life Insurance Company Ltd. becomes the first 100% wholly and purely Indian company, without any foreign collaboration to enter the Indian Life insurance market. The launch is with an initial paid-up capital of 157 crores. Sahara India Life Insurance Company Ltd. (SILICA) is a life insurance company in the private sector, Sahara Asset Management Company Pvt. Ltd. manages 16 equity and debt mutual funds. Sahara Banking & Financial Services Fund has been adjudged the Best Performing Banking Sector Fund over a three-year performance by the international agency "Lippers" in 2012.[27]


On 13 August 2012, Sahara India announced the opening of its retail FMCG business named 'Q shop' (Quality shop) with an initial investment of ₹3,000 crores. Sahara also announced hiring 6,00,000 sales personnel and 3,000 customer care executives.[28] At its launch, Subrata Roy said that Sahara had been planning for this venture for the last two years and was opening 'Q shops' in major cities across the country to provide adulteration-free consumer merchandise including processed food and beverages to buyers.[29] The group said it would set up 305 warehouses in 285 cities in a phased manner.

Sahara India Pariwar's Sahara Q Shop entered into the Guinness World Records when it opened 315 outlets in 10 states of India, at once on 1 April 2013.[30]

Health care

The group owns a hospital in Lucknow by the name Sahara Hospital. This hospital became operational in February 2009 and is currently operating with approximately 350 beds, including 120 bed Critical Care Infrastructure which is expandable to 554 beds.[31]

Information technology

Under the name "Sahara Next", the company offers information technology consulting services in banking, finance, media and entertainment, chemicals, and CRM.

Subrata Roy has been planning to foray into online education in India, which is targeted at small towns and villages. He has put in place a team that consists of members from top universities and colleges across India and abroad.[6] The route map of the program has been prepared, and 14,000 hours of lectures have been prepared for this.[32] The group also announced on 1 July 2018, that it is entering into new businesses which are at different levels of development, and will be launched one after another in the year.[33]


The group owned an airline, Air Sahara, which it sold to Jet Airways in 2007.[34]

In October 2011, Sahara purchased 42.5% of the Force India Formula One team.[35][36] The team finished as best 4th in the constructors championship in 2016 and 2017.

British driver Paul di Resta driving the Force India VJM05 carrying Sahara branding

The team went into administration in mid-2018 and was later sold and renamed Racing Point Force India F1 Team.

The group runs a school in Pune, the International School Aamby – Aamby Valley.[37]

Legal issues

Being a largely unlisted company Sahara India Parivar's activities have come under criticism largely because of legal issues it is facing.[38]

On 26 February 2014, the Supreme Court of India had issues warrants to summon Subrata Roy,[39] Managing Worker, chairman and founder of Sahara India Pariwar, on a litigation on the Optionally Fully Convertible Debentures issued by the two companies of Sahara India Pariwar to which Securities and Exchange Board of India had claimed its jurisdiction and objected on why Sahara has not taken permission from it. Sahara has claimed that the said bonds are hybrid product, thus does not come under the jurisdiction of SEBI, instead is governed by Registrar of Companies (ROC) under Ministry of Corporate Affairs, from which the two companies of Sahara has already taken permission and submitted the red herring prospectus with ROC before issuing the bonds.

SEBI in return ordered Sahara's two companies to stop issuing the said bonds and return money to investors. Sahara contested the case in various courts which eventually came to Supreme Court of India. On 14 June 2012, (during the final hearing of the case), the group had provided details of its financials up to 30 April 2012. While the court reserved its order, Sahara claims that it has already paid to 95% of the investors and discharged its OFCD liability to the tune of 23,500 crore (US$2.9 billion) and only around 2,260 crore (US$280 million) are left against which Sahara has already deposited more than 12,000 crore (US$1.5 billion) which has with interest swelled to 16,000 crore (US$2.0 billion). By 31 August 2012 the date of Supreme Court order, the group repaid majority of its OFCD investors between May the last date of hearing and by 30 August 2012 the final order. Since these repayments have not been taken into consideration, Sahara maintains that any money paid now will obviously mean a double payment towards one liability.

It is also been reported that Sahara has paid 725.9 crore (US$91 million) as TDS (tax deducted at source) to the Income Tax Departments on the interest which along with investment was repaid to 95 percent of the investors, between 2009–10 and 2012–13. The income tax authorities had found that the beneficiary investors were existent and accordingly confirmed the repayments made in those particular years. One of Sahara's arguments in the apex court revolves around the fact that if one government body has found investors, why can't the other.[6]

The case itself comprises big numbers such as collection of over 24,000 crore (US$3.0 billion) from three crore individuals, while once in 2013 Sahara sent 127 trucks containing 31,669 cartons full of over three crore application forms and two crore redemption vouchers to SEBI office. Apparently, this had resulted into a huge traffic jam on outskirts of Mumbai, where the regulator is headquartered. SEBI on the other hand because the trucks reached after office hours SEBI rejected the second batch of files, which as per Sahara contained 25% of the investor information.[40]

Furthermore, the market regulator SEBI advertised four times in more than 144 newspapers to ask the investors of Sahara to refund the money. And since August 2012 Sebi has only refunded 64 crore (US$8.0 million) to the investors while it has 16,000 crore (US$2.0 billion) from Sahara. In October 2014, a shocking revelation was made when only around 4,600 investors in two Sahara group companies had come forward to claim refunds from the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), which had asked those who had purchased bonds issued by the entities to claim their money. This gave a valid point to Sahara's argument before courts that it had repaid most of the investors who had come forward to claim the investment which they had made in bonds issued by two group companies.[41]

He was granted interim bail by the Supreme Court on 26 March 2014 on the condition that he would deposit the huge bail amount of 10,000 crore (US$1.3 billion).[42] Subrata was eventually taken into judicial custody and sent to Tihar jail, along with two other Sahara directors, on 4 March 2014 for failing to deposit 10,000 crore (US$1.3 billion) with SEBI.[43] In Tihar jail, Subrata unsuccessfully tried to sell some of his hotel properties to raise 10,000 crore (US$1.3 billion) for his bail bond.[44] He remained in Tihar jail for more than two years, and was released on parole in May 2016 to attend the last rites of his deceased mother.[45]

On 1 July 2018, the group revealed that majority of 20,000 crore (US$2.5 billion) of Sahara's money (including the interest) which is with SEBI will be refunded back to Sahara India as the group had already made majority of the payments to its investors. The group also stated that SEBI will be directed to start the verification of the documents of Sahara's investors, which are already provided to them by Sahara India Pariwar. Despite the double payment for single liability, Sahara India has been continuously depositing money of around ₹20,000 crore (including interest earned) in Sahara-Sebi account.[46][47]

Charitable work

The Sahara Welfare Foundation, the social development unit of Sahara India Pariwar, runs social welfare projects.[48][49][50] The company assisted the families of Indian soldiers killed in the Kargil War with a commitment of ₹50 crore (US$10.65 million )[51][52] [53] The company claims to have assisted families whose homes were damaged in the 2006 Gujarat earthquake. Other welfare activities include water purification systems and education resource systems in Indian villages.[54][55][56]

In 2013, Sahara contributed to the relief efforts in flood-hit Uttarakhand region wherein one lakh bottles of drinking water, juice bottles and food packets along with candles and match boxes were said to be provided by them. There were 25 medical health unit vans equipped with doctors and free medicines made available and It was said by the group that, they will contribute to the rehabilitation program by constructing 10,000 pre-fabricated houses.[57]

Working towards eradicating hunger and malnutrition in India, Sahara India Pariwar's Hotel Sahara Star based in Mumbai joined hands with Feeding India to provide food to the underprivileged communities.[58]

Guinness World Records

  • Sahara holds the record for the most people singing a national anthem simultaneously. 1,21,653 employees of the company sang India's national anthem on 6 May 2013 in Lucknow, India.[59]
  • Sahara India Pariwar's Sahara Q Shop entered into the Guinness World Records when it opened record 315 outlets in 10 states of India, all at once on 1 April 2013.[30]


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  2. ^ "India Cricket News: Sahara Group mulls sponsorship re-bid for Indian team". ESPN Cricinfo. 8 December 2013. Archived from the original on 16 December 2013. Retrieved 18 February 2014.
  3. ^ "About Subrata Roy Sahara". Archived from the original on 23 April 2021. Retrieved 4 November 2020.
  4. ^ "Subrata Roy Sahara". Bloomberg BusinessWeek. Archived from the original on 12 March 2023. Retrieved 12 September 2011.
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  14. ^ Sahara buys IBL's Lucknow franchise, The Times of India, 16 July 2013
  15. ^ 2 New IPL Team Archived 7 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine, The Times of India, 22 March 2010
  16. ^ "Sahara India Pariwar launches Polo team Sahara Warriors". 22 November 2012. Archived from the original on 5 December 2012. Retrieved 17 December 2012.
  17. ^ "Sahara to own hockey franchise". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 24 July 2012. Archived from the original on 27 July 2012. Retrieved 25 July 2012.
  18. ^ "Sahara set to become Bangladesh sponsor". IBNLive. 30 May 2012. Archived from the original on 28 February 2014. Retrieved 24 February 2014.
  19. ^ Sahara Samay bags international honor, The Economic Times, 6 April 2005
  20. ^ Sahara plans three weekly newspapers,, 1 February 2003
  21. ^ Sahara One Motion Pictures – a banner in the right direction Archived 2 November 2013 at the Wayback Machine,,5 September 2006
  22. ^ Indian Congolomerate [sic] In Talks About MGM Bid Archived 26 January 2022 at the Wayback Machine, Reuters, 18 September 2010
  23. ^ Sahara Says MGM Studio Creditors Reject $2 Billion Bid Archived 28 September 2010 at the Wayback Machine, Google, 24 September 2010
  24. ^ "Sahara checks into iconic New York hotel". Hindustan Times. 31 July 2012. Archived from the original on 28 January 2014. Retrieved 30 September 2012.
  25. ^ Sahara buys UK hotel for Rs 3,275cr, The Times of India, 31 December 2010
  26. ^ Karmin, Craig; Morris, Keiko (3 July 2018). "New York's Iconic Plaza Hotel Sold to Qatar Fund for $600 Million". The Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Archived from the original on 9 November 2020. Retrieved 1 December 2020.
  27. ^ "LIPPER FUND AWARDS 2012 INDIA WINNERS LIST, """ (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 15 October 2013. Retrieved 15 January 2015.
  28. ^ Sahara enters retail, to launch 800 'Q' Shops Archived 12 March 2023 at the Wayback Machine, Business Today, 16 August 2012
  29. ^ Sahara in Rs. 3,000-cr ‘Q Shop’ retail foray, Hindustan Times, 13 August 2012
  30. ^ a b Ahadion, Ayat (5 June 2017). "Sahara Q shop makes it to the Guinness World Records" (Press release). Good Herald. Archived from the original on 3 August 2017. Retrieved 3 August 2017.
  31. ^ Nawabi Entry in Healthcare Archived 4 December 2012 at the Wayback Machine, Express Healthcare, 1 April 2009
  32. ^ TNN / Updated: Nov 25, 2017, 11:28 IST (25 November 2017). "Sahara eyes slice of online education sector | Ranchi News - Times of India". Archived from the original on 26 November 2017. Retrieved 14 April 2022.((cite web)): CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link) CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  33. ^ "Sahara confident of getting out of financial constraints by FY19". Deccan Chronicle. Archived from the original on 3 July 2018. Retrieved 3 July 2018.
  34. ^ "Jet buys Sahara Airlines at Rs 1450 cr". The Economic Times. Archived from the original on 4 April 2022. Retrieved 4 April 2022.
  35. ^ "Sahara Group takes 42.5% stake in Force India Formula One team". The Guardian. London. 12 October 2011. Archived from the original on 14 December 2013. Retrieved 12 October 2011.
  36. ^ "Sahara buys 42% stake in Mallya's Force India F1 team". The Times of India. The Times Group. 12 October 2011. Archived from the original on 15 October 2011. Retrieved 12 October 2011.
  37. ^ "International school aamby ::". Archived from the original on 7 November 2017. Retrieved 19 January 2015.
  38. ^ Bandyopadhyay, Tamal (5 December 2013). "Excerpt from the book "Sahara: The untold story"". Business Today. Jaico Publishers. Archived from the original on 12 February 2015. Retrieved 11 February 2015.
  39. ^ "SC issues arrest warrant against Subrata Roy". Hindustan Times. 26 February 2014. Archived from the original on 4 April 2022. Retrieved 4 April 2022.
  40. ^ "Sahara to get truckloads of papers back from Sebi". Times Of India. 15 February 2016. Archived from the original on 15 February 2016. Retrieved 15 February 2016.
  41. ^ "4,600 Sahara investors claim refund from Sebi". Times Of India. 10 October 2014. Archived from the original on 10 October 2014. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
  42. ^ "SC grants conditional bail to Sahara chief Subrata Roy". Times of India. 26 March 2014. Archived from the original on 26 March 2014. Retrieved 26 March 2014.
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  44. ^ "From Tihar jail, Sahara chief Subrata Roy tries to sell the New York Plaza". Times of India. 10 August 2014. Archived from the original on 13 August 2014. Retrieved 20 August 2014.
  45. ^ "SC grants four-week parole to Sahara chief". The Hindu. 7 May 2016. Archived from the original on 27 November 2016. Retrieved 1 August 2016.
  46. ^ "Sahara says confident of getting out of financial constraints by next fiscal, entering new businesses". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 25 July 2018. Retrieved 3 July 2018.
  47. ^ "Sahara says confident of getting out of financial constraints by next fiscal, entering new businesses". Moneycontrol. Archived from the original on 3 July 2018. Retrieved 24 October 2018.
  48. ^ Sahara to put in Rs1000 crore in welfare foundation, DNA, 5 February 2012
  49. ^ Sahara Welfare Foundation, Sahara India
  50. ^ "Sahara Welfare Foundation". Archived from the original on 1 November 2013. Retrieved 15 April 2013.
  51. ^ Sahara to pay martyrs' families 5 times salary for 10 yrs Archived 12 March 2023 at the Wayback Machine, The Indian Express
  52. ^ Sahara will pay salaries of Mumbai martyrs , The Economic Times
  53. ^ Sahara to pay martyrs' families , DNA
  54. ^ Sahara India to adopt 1,000 villages for all round development , The Economic Times, 10 June 2013
  55. ^ Sahara flags off prog to adopt 1,000 villages Archived 27 September 2013 at the Wayback Machine, The Economic Times, 12 June 2013
  56. ^ Subrata Roy Sahara Announced to Adopt 1000 Villages in 7 States Under CSR Archived 12 March 2023 at the Wayback Machine, India CSR, 1 April 2013
  57. ^ "Sahara joins Uttarakhand relief work –". The Times of India. 24 June 2013. Archived from the original on 1 July 2016. Retrieved 5 March 2014.
  58. ^ Ankita (18 February 2019). "Sahara India Pariwar's Mumbai hotel joins hands with Feeding India as a CSR initiative". Cross Barriers. Archived from the original on 22 January 2021. Retrieved 14 January 2021.
  59. ^ "Sahara's national anthem feat gets Guinness honour", The Times of India, 7 May 2013
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Sahara India Pariwar
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