Today is the birth anniversary of Dhirubhai Ambani. Dhirubhai Ambani was born on this day in 1932 in Chorwad, Junagadh, Gujarat. His name was Dhirajlal Hirachand Ambani. Apart from these, another big businessman of the country, Ratan Tata, also has a birthday today. Ratan Tata was born in 1937 in Surat, Gujarat. Reliance Industries founder Dhirubhai Ambani did his studies in Junagadh itself. He had studied up to the 10th standard. Due to economic difficulties, he had to quit after this. Ratan Tata did his early studies at the Cathedral and John Conan School in Mumbai. He then studied at Bishop Cotton School, Shimla. He went to Cornell University in 1962 after obtaining an Architecture degree from here. He completed his management studies at Harvard Business School in 1975.
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Dhirubhai Ambani, after finishing fifth in a village school, was sent to Junagadh city for further studies. More than studies, he was famous in school for sports, he was not able to do as well in regular class tests as he was doing in sports. Nevertheless, he fared well in his annual exams, he passed very hard in arithmetic. Whether in school or at a boarding house, he was a joking among all schoolchildren. He used to lead the students who also visit the famous Gir forest to see the school students and lions topping the Girnar Hills on weekends. In his third year in school, he was elected general secretary of Junagadh Students Union. Junagadh was a princely state ruled by a Muslim Nawab in those days.
The Indian Independence Act, as passed by the British Parliament, required the Nawab to merge his kingdom with the Indian Union but the Nawab did not agree to it. On 15 August 1947, when India was celebrating its first Independence Day, the people of Junagadh were still chained. He was asked to stay indoors. All rallies were banned and the hoisting of the Indian national flag was announced.
Dhirubhai Ambani called a meeting of all Junagadh students in a school ground where a hoisting ceremony was held with great pomp. Many patriotic songs were sung and sweets were distributed among them. Dhirubhai made his first public speech at the rally. It was a brief but emotional and thundering speech. He spoke with great confidence.
Those who took out the rally were called to the nearby police station for defying orders. There Dhirubhai Ambani was interrogated for several hours, he was threatened but he did not bow down. Late at night he was allowed to return to the boarding house. It was the first time he received a hero’s reception from his schoolmates.