Bad Boy Billionaires is finally out on Netflix, after its fair share of legal trouble, and the spotlight is back on India's biggest economical defaulters. These people robbed the most vulnerable among us with a smile on their face and a Rolex on their wrists, and one of the standout characters of the show has been Subrata Roy - the chief of Sahara. His episode was truly a wild and borderline unbelievable look into just how delusional and megalomaniacal the uber rich can be. Here are some of the most insane facts revealed in the documentary.
1. Subrata Roy built a cult of personality around himself, to the point that people would fall at his feet and call him their saviour.
Many people from rural regions, who had benefitted from Sahara's schemes in the early days, considered Subrata their guru and saviour. Their loyalty worked to establish him as some kind of god to the poor.
2. His employees would call him Saharashri, and they all had to say 'Sahara Pranaam' when he walked by. They would also have to do a special salute to him with their hands on their chests.
3. He once held a dizzyingly large rally with 1.1 million employees from all over the country. They sang the national anthem and performed other activities usually seen only at religious gatherings.
4. While being investigated, he sent SEBI 5 crore documents (mostly fake) in 127 trucks at midnight in order to make their task that much more difficult.
It would take SEBI many months to scrutinise these documents.
5. He ordered Sahara's Vice President, Rajiv Bajaj, to colour his hair black to match his own.
6. He married off 101 women from lower-economic backgrounds in a big joint ceremony, in order to further build his image as a man of family and trust.
This act cemented his reputation as a person who would treat your money safely, and who you could rely on. However, it turned out to be yet another calculated move in a long con.
7. The $3.6 billion fine levied on Sahara by the Supreme Court was the largest ever financial penalty in Indian history.
8. Financial regulator SEBI has the unenviable job of tracking down and refunding around 30 million people who invested in Sahara's 2 companies that went public.
However, millions of others who invested in different Sahara schemes are not even covered under the SC ruling, and will most likely never see their money returned. These are mostly people from extremely low income backgrounds.
9. The 2004 wedding of Subrata's 2 sons was the most lavish and expensive wedding in India's history at the time. It reportedly cost $60 million, and had 10,000 guests.
The PM, various CMs, and A-list movie stars attended.
If you guys haven't seen this episode, do yourselves a favour and go watch it now.
All images from Netflix.