The Spice King

It was 27th March 1923 in Sialkot (now in Pakistan), where an entrepreneur took birth who later revolutionised the spice market of the country to the extent which nobody even ever imagined of. This rags to riches journey is the life story of MDH founder Mahashay Dharampal Ji who began as a tangeywalla (horse cart puller) and reached up to the level of highest paid CEO of the country.

The journey started from Sialkot but took a different shape altogether, Mahashay Chunnilal & Mata Chanan Devi were least aware of the fact that their school dropout son who studied only till fifth standard would be awarded with country’s third highest civilian award Padma Bhushan. The market was calling the young lad to come and rule the spice market in coming future.

The country got freedom from the clutches of traitors and the entire country got divided into two parts, one was named India and other was named Pakistan. People were given choice of moving to the desired destination and Mahashay Dharampal Ji moved to India from Pakistan along with his family having Rs 1500 in pocket.

Mahashay Dharampal Ji tried his luck along with his brother to earn bread and butter as that time the prime focus was to earn livelihood. He started his career as a tangeywalla in New Delhi wherein he use to give a ride from New Delhi Station to Qutub Road. This stint was very small as he did not like pulling Tanga. He gave a thought to the business which he joined way back in Pakistan but he had to quit and move to another country due to partition.

He got a small shop at Karol Bagh, New Delhi with the name of the shop Mahashian Di Hatti. He maintained the quality as he was already containing the spice expertise and in no time the spices became very popular. He use to grind and sell his spices by his own and sell in the villages of Bihar & Odisa. The banner of his shop contained the same name which his father used during the inception of the spice shop at Sialkot (Pakistan) “Deghi Mirch Wale”.

The product building scaled up immensely and the brand moved from a 14ft X 9ft shop to 64 sku with a deep emergence in every household of the country. Though the brand got immense popularity majorly in northern part of the country but the brand created its presence across globe.

It was a phase wherein the companies were advertising their products to create awareness, following the steps of others Mahashay Dharampal Ji also decided to advertise his own product. He was very much involved in to all the activities of his company so the same way he was also involved in the ad making of his product as well. The set was ready for the ad shoot but Mahashay Dharmpal Ji got to know that the person who was assigned to act in the advertisement did not turn up. The advertising agency gave Mahashay Dharmpal Ji a chance to play the role of Dadaji in the advertisement playing with the children and giving blessing to young ones. The idea clicked and Mahashay Dharmpal Ji became the brand ambassador of his own brand and he became the household name for every Indian. An old man with red turban and white moustache became the imagery of the brand MDH.

The brand name MDH is a true example of hard work, dedication and focused work, despite of his elderly age he never missed visiting his factories to check the quality of raw material which gets sourced from Kerla to Afganistan. He knew very well that strong association with the channel partners is the key to success in FMCG industry so he was very much involved in strengthening his channel partners.

Mahashay Dharampal Ji was not just a true businessman but he was also a person with a very nice heart so he invested his quality time in doing social activities as well. The philanthropy was in veins as it was being gifted by his parents who were active in doing social welfare activities.

His philanthropy journey started from a 10 bed eye hospital in Subhash Nagar, New Delhi and later a multi specialty hospital was built at Janakpuri, New Delhi. The name of the hospital was dedicated to his mother and the hospital was named Mata Chanan Devi Multi Specialty Hospital.

He developed a strong educational system for the suppressed part of the society, he actively established numerous schools and to name few of them are MDH International School, Mahashay Chunnila Saraswati Mandir, Mata Leelawanti Kanya Vidhayala, etc. He founded more than 20 schools to empower the education system and benefit society with poor category at large.

Mahashay Dharmpal Ji was really a nature with religious harmony; he always maintained a balance in the religious system of the society and never differentiated between hindu, muslim, sikh or Christians. He never became part of those strata of the society where there was religious difference and this is the reason which is being sought after for him not getting into politics.

The philosophy of Mahashay Dharmpal Ji says “Give your best to the world and the best will automatically come to you.” MDH is a name which does not only stand for its quality spices but the name holds synonyms for the welfare of the society and uplifting the needy by establishing and founding schools, hospitals and various trusts.

The legend is no more with us but he has left us a great learning that true dedication, hard work and complete focus on the work can create wonders. Today almost every Indian house has a space in their kitchen for MDH range of products and the same way it is being trusted and relished globally by millions.

The God Of Football

It was 30th Oct 1960 when a child was born to a poor family of Buenos Aires province, Argentina. Dalma Salvadora Franco and Diego Maradona had 8 children and they stayed in a shantytown on the outer skirts of Buenos Aires, Argentina, this child was the 5th of their 8 children.

Maradona got his first football at the age of 3 as a gift; his love for his gifted football was so immense that he use to sleep along with the football so that nobody steals it. It was looking like a normal childish behavior but nobody knew that the 3 year old boy would play the most pivotal role in the history of football.

His devotion towards the football game increased which was very much evident in his football skills and his talent was acknowledged at the age of 8 while he was playing in his neighbor club Estrella Roja. At the age of 10 he joined club Les Cebollitas (The Little Onions), the club was the most renowned club of Argentina and in no time he became the staple of that club.

The boy was very quick on the field during game and during half time of first division games he use to amuse spectators of the ground with his football techniques and skills. The boy was immensely talented and he considered Rivellino and George as his inspirational role model during his growing years.

Maradona played his debut match on 20th Oct 1976 for Argentinos Juniors, that day was 10 days prior to his 16th birthday. This created a mark for Mardona and he became the youngest player playing for Argentine Primera Division. The boy in the 16 number jersey played in a such a way that even after 30 years the player of the opponent team Juan Domingo Cabrera recalled the way Maradona applied his passing technique in the game. Maradona scored his first goal only 2 weeks later after turning 16 against Marplatense.

 After spending 5 years with Argentinos Juniors Mardona signed a contract with Boca Juniors and the boy played immensely well, the season of Boca Juniors was also one of the most remarkable seasons. After playing for Boca Juniors he received a record transfer fee of whopping 7.6 mn USD (56 Cr INR-current rate) of that time and started playing for Barcelona, Spain. In the year 1983 Maradona led Barcelona to win Copa Del Ray (Spain’s Annual National Cup Competition) beating Real Madrid. The winning series continued and the Spanish Super Cup was also won, beating Athletic Bilabo.

On 26 June 1983, Barcelona won the biggest club games El Clasico beating Real Madrid and during this match Maradona played so well that he became the first Barcelona player to be applauded by the fans of arch rival club Real Madrid.

Maradona’s stint with Barcelona was not smooth as he underwent ankle injuries but his desperateness for the game helped him in getting back in the field and he scored 38 goals in 58 games. The rise of his game was at its peak as he received another record transfer fee of 10.48 mn USD (77 Cr INR-current rate) from Italy’s series A club Napolis.

Maradona was welcomed by 75,000 fans when he arrived Naples, the craze of Maradona was so huge that a local newspaper wrote “We don’t have mayors, houses, schools, buses, sanitation but none of it matters as we have Maradona now.”

Napoli was the best professional stint for Maradona as he was at the peak of his career wherein he received the captain’s armband soon after joining the club. Led by Maradona, Napoli won their first ever series A Italian Championship in 1986–87. The victory was highly considered and the then Sportswriter David Goldblatt wrote, “The celebrations were tumultuous. A rolling series of impromptu street parties and festivities broke out contagiously across the city in a round-the-clock carnival which ran for over a week. The world was turned upside down. The Neapolitans held mock funerals for Juventus and Milan, burning their coffins, their death notices announcing ‘May 1987, the other Italy has been defeated. A new empire is born.”

The career of Maradona was so big with Napoli that despite various fines for not playing games and using cocaine substance his jersey 10 got retired with the exit of Maradona from the club which was later given to Lionel Messi.

Maradona debuted his first world cup in the year 1982 and he clinched the victory mark under his own leadership in the 1986 world cup. Maradona captained his country Argentina again in the year 1992 but this time the overall performance got effected by his ankle injury and they failed to gain the world cup title. In the next world cup during 1996 he played only for 2 games as he failed to pass the drug test for ephedrine doping.

Described as a “classic number 10” in the media Maradona was a traditional playmaker who usually played in a free role, either as an attacking midfielder behind the forwards, or as a second striker in a front two although he was also deployed as an offensive minded central midfielder in a 4–4–2 formation on occasion. 

Maradona was renowned for his dribbling ability, vision, close ball control, passing, and creativity, and is considered to have been one of the most skilful players in the sport. He had a compact physique and with his strong legs, low center of gravity, resulting balance, he could withstand physical pressure well while running with the ball. Despite his small stature while his acceleration, quick feet, and agility, combined with his dribbling skills and close control at speed, allowed him to change direction quickly, making himself quite difficult for opponents to defend against. Maradona is regarded as one of the greatest dribblers in the history of the game.

Diego Armando Maradona is no more with us but he has left us a great narration of success story to cherish which he carved with his talent, ability and hardship. He was one of the most controversial figures of the football but despite this fact he was awarded as the “Best Football Player Of 20th Century.” The use of banned substance or the issue with his personal life does matter but we all should focus on his resilience nature which created a new field for the player every time to create history.