Subhash Chandra

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Subhash Chandra
Subhash Chandra.png
Subhash Chandra in 2018
Member of Parliament of Rajya Sabha from Haryana [2]
Assumed office
2 August 2016 [1]
Preceded by Suresh Prabhu, BJP
Constituency Haryana State
Personal details
Born (1950-11-30) 30 November 1950 (age 67)
Hisar district, Haryana, India
Nationality Indian
Political party Independent
Spouse(s) Sushila Devi
Children (2) Punit Goenka, Amit Goenka
Mother Tara Devi Goenka
Father Nandkishore Goenka
Residence Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Occupation Chairman of Essel Group
Known for Father of Indian Television
Net worth Increase US$ 4.6 billion[3]
Properties Zee Tv

Subhash Chandra (born Subhash Chandra Goenka on 30 November 1950) is an Indian Billionaire media baron with interests in Media & Entertainment, Education, Packaging, Financial Services.[4] He is the chairman of Essel Group, an Indian conglomerate and has created an empire over $ 10 billion. With the launch of Zee TV in 1992, Subhash Chandra pioneered in the private sector media and entertainment industry and thus is knows as 'The Father of Indian Television'. He was formerly the chairman of India's TV channel network Zee Media, but resigned as Director and Non-Executive Chairman of the company with effect from 24 May 2016.[5][6][7] He was elected to the Upper House of Indian parliament from the Haryana state in the 2016 Rajya Sabha election. He has an honorary degree from UEL.[8] In May 2014, on the completion of 90 years of his Essel Group, Subhash Chandra donated 5000 crores of his family wealth for the Subhash Chandra Foundation.

Early years[edit]

Chandra was born in Adampur village in Hisar district, Haryana in a "baniya" family.[clarification needed] In 1965, he dropped out of 10th grade to join the family business of commission agents and traders who procured and supplied rice to Food Corporation of India.[9]

He has a family debt of 5 lakh rupees, which he had to pay up. His family could not bore the expenses of his education. Hence, he dropped out of the school and vowed to pay the debt on his family.

In the 1980s he started manufacturing flexible packaging (mainly plastic tubes) for goods such as toothpaste under the name Essel Packaging. He followed up with a leisure park EsselWorld in north Mumbai, then known as Bombay.

In 1992, he launched Zee Television in collaboration with Li Ka Shing, and first online lottery and first Dish TV in India.[10][11]


Chandra launched India's first satellite TV channel, Zee TV, in 1992.[12] The channel competes with, among others, Sony Entertainment Television and STAR Plus. His TV channels, numbering up to 90, including those in local language Hindi, reach 1.3 Billion people spread over 174 countries.[3]

Chandra did not just start an organisation but discovered a new industry in itself. The M&E sector employees more than half million people. Zee is now in its silver jubilee and has recently launched India's first OTT platform in regional languages, ZEE5. Zee Entertainment is India's most watched news network.

The 90 year old Essel Group conglomerate now includes ZEE, Zee Media Corporation Limited, Siti Cable Limited, Dish TV India Ltd., Zee Learn Ltd., Essel Finance and many others. Essel Utilities, the infrastructure arm of the group if India's only successful waste to energy treatment plant, which now electrifies 10,000 household in Madhya Pradesh.

His other interests include packaging, theme parks, lotteries and cinema multiplexes. He started the failed Indian Cricket League, a domestic Twenty20 cricket league intended as a challenge to the Board of Control for Cricket in India, the nation's governing body in cricket. The Indian Premier League that we see now has its seeds in Chandra's ICL.

In November 2009, he took over management responsibility of Daily News and Analysis (DNA)), which is among the top eight English dailies in India and one of the fastest growing English newspapers in the country.

In 2005, in collaboration with Dainik Bhaskar group, Chandra launched an English daily, DNA, in Mumbai to challenge the well settled The Times of India newspaper. The competition was one of the biggest newspaper battles of Mumbai. Sustaining earlier losses, the newspaper eventually turned around.[13] The newspaper now fully run by Chandra himself caters in Delhi, Jaipur and Ahmedabad too.

Honorary doctorate[edit]

Subhash Chandra was awarded an honorary doctorate of Business Administration from the University of East London (UEL). He received the Doctorate from Lord Gulam Noon, the Chancellor of the University of East London, at the ceremony for their Royal Dock Business School graduates.

During the award acceptance speech Chandra thanked the entire senior management team at the Royal Dock Business School, saying,

"It is indeed a privilege to be recognized outside one’s country, and in the presence of such highly acclaimed and respected individuals. I thank you all for bestowing this prestigious award that I feel honoured to receive."[14][15]

Subhash Chandra Show is India's most watched youth show, where Chandra shares his life experiences with the youth of the country.

Subhash Chandra Show[edit]

The Subhash Chandra Show is a platform where Chandra engages with youth from across India and interacts on different topics. The Show is also known as Sach show, the word Sach is an abbreviation of Subhash Chandra in Devanagri (सच)The core concept is to motivate the youth, inspire and share ideas, and help young entrepreneurs and aspiring minds for business. The main purpose of starting the show was to share the knowledge that Subhash Chandra had gained from 50 years of his business experience as suggested to him by his father. [16] The show airs every week on Saturday at 10 pm on Zee News and 7pm on Zee Business, and on Sundays at 11 am on both channels. It is also aired on other channels of Zee Media Corporation Limited. The Subhash Chandra Show is India's most watched youth show.


The Z Factor: My Journey as the Wrong Man at the Right Time is an autobiography of Subhash Chandra. It was co-edited by Pranjal Sharma. The book was launched on 20 January 2016 by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at 7, Race Course Road, New Delhi. There are also Hindi and Marathi variants of the best seller 'The Z Factor.' The Marathi version of the book was released amid the presence of all prominent politicians of Maharashtra. [17][18] The book was also officially unveiled at Zee Jaipur Literature Festival on 21 January 2016.[19]

Subhash Chandra Foundation[edit]

On the completion of 9 decades of Chandra's Essel Group, he pledged 5000 crore of his family wealth towards Subhash Chandra Foundation. The Foundation focusses on capacity building on the country and is working towards integrated rural development by improving social infrastructure and supporting farmer based livelihood. The Foundation consists of various other initiatives like SABKA Development Association, Sarthi, Esselerator, Sach Impact and others. The Foundation is referred to as Sach Foundation which derived its name from initials of Subhash Chandra (सच)

SABKA Development Association works for the 6 villages adopted by Chandra in his home state. SABKA is an abbreviation of initials of the villages like Sadalpur, Adampur, Khara Barwala, Adampur Mandi.

Sarthi is a bridge between change makers and change seekers in Madhya Pradesh. So far, Sarthi has reached out to 2,00,000 people and has thousands of beneficiaries.

Esselerator is an incubator which provides a platform to startups in Media Tech, Edu Tech sectors.

Sach Impact, is a platform for social entrepreneurs. It provides platform to for-profit and not-for-profit organisation working in diverse fields.

Ekal Vidyalaya[edit]

Subhash Chandra is an educationist. He is chairman of Ekal Global. Ekal Vidyalayas through its one teacher - one school program works for the under privileged children, especially in the tribal areas. Ekal enables 2 Million children from its 69,000 + schools and 70,000 + volunteers network.



  1. ^ "Dr Subhash Chandra takes oath as Rajya Sabha member". 4 August 2016. 
  2. ^ "Subhash Chandra wins RS seat as 12 Cong votes were rejected due to 'wrong pen'". Hindustan Times. 12 June 2016. Retrieved 13 June 2016. 
  3. ^ a b "Forbes – Subhash Chandra". 9 March 2011. Retrieved 13 May 2017. 
  4. ^ "Essel Group eye global venture, rule out Lalit Modi's involvement". Indian Express. Retrieved 2 August 2015. 
  5. ^ "Subhash Chandra steps down as Zee Media chairman". 
  6. ^ "Zee group: Each brother to own 70–80% of business". Times of India. Retrieved 2 August 2015. 
  7. ^ "Dish TV posts Q1 net profit of Rs 54.21 crore". Economic Times. India Times. Retrieved 2 August 2015. 
  8. ^ "Zee chairman Subhash Chandra receives Honorary Doctorate at University of East London". [dead link]
  9. ^ "Subhash Chandra Biography- About family, children, education, wife, age, and more". Retrieved 2016-03-29. 
  10. ^ Khandekar, Vanitha Kohli (25 March 2015). "40 Years Ago... And now: Subhash Chandra's chutzpah shaped his media business". Business Standard. Retrieved 4 August 2015. 
  11. ^
  12. ^ Adhikari, Anand (25 May 2014). "Passing the Baton". business Retrieved 4 August 2015. 
  13. ^ Ajwani, Deepak (14 March 2014). "At The Zee Group, Son Punit has taken the Baton from Subhash Chandra". Forbes India Magazine. Retrieved 4 August 2015. 
  14. ^ "Subhash chandra got Doctorate". Retrieved 15 September 2016. 
  15. ^ "Subhash chandra conferred honorary doctrate". Archived from the original on 15 September 2016. Retrieved 15 September 2016. 
  16. ^ "Dr Subhash Chandra Show News, Latest Breaking News on Dr Subhash Chandra Show". 
  17. ^ "PM releases". 
  18. ^ "PM releases "The Z Factor," a book written by Shri Subhash Chandra". 
  19. ^ "Dr Subhash Chandra's book 'The Z Factor' launched by PM Modi today". 20 January 2016. 
  20. ^ "Zee TV's Subhash Chandra to Receive Emmy Honor". The Hollywood Reporter. 6 January 2011. Retrieved 14 September 2013. 
  21. ^ "Dr Subhash Chandra to receive Canada India Foundation (CIF) Chanchlani Global Indian Award". Zee News. 3 February 2016. Retrieved 13 June 2016.

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