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Syt. B.K. Birla

Residence:  ‘Basant Vihar’, 18, Gurusaday Road, Calcutta – 700 019.
Office: ‘Birla Building’, 9/1 R.N. Mukherjee road, Calcutta – 700 001.

Born on 4th February 1921, Mr. B.K. Birla is the youngest son of the late Syt. G.D. Birla
Married in April 1942 to Sarala Biyani – daughter of late Syt. Brijlal Biyani, who was one of the most important political and social workers of Berar. Mr. B.K. Birla had one son – Aditya Vikram who expired in 1995 – and has two daughters – Jayashree Mohta and Manjushree Khaitan.

Business Activities:

Since the age of 15 years, Mr. Birla has been actively associated with a large number of Companies under the management of Messrs. Birla Brothers Private Limited. Since 1936, he has been the Chairman of Messrs. Kesoram Industries & Cotton Mills Limited – one of the biggest industrial units in Bengal. Mr. Birla himself has started many new industries in various fields such as Cotton, Viscose, Polyester and Nylon Yarns, Refractory, Paper, Shipping, Tyrecord, Transparent Paper, Spunpipe, Cement, Tea, Coffee, Cardamom, Chemicals, Plywood, M.D.F. Board etc.

In 1959, Mr. B.K.Birla was invited by the Government of Ethiopia to visit their country and, as a result of this, Indo Ethiopian Textiles Share Company was established which was the first major joint venture by any Indian Industrialist in foreign countries.

In recognition of the outstanding achievement of this Company under the guidance of Mr. & Mrs. B.K. Birla, His Imperial Majesty, the Emperor of Ethiopia Haile Sellassie I, had awarded to Mr. Birla the medal of the Mainelik II’ which was the highest Ethiopian Award of the then Emperor.

Today Mr. Birla shoulders heavy responsibilities of managing and guiding various organisations. He is at present the Chairman of the following important Companies:

  • Jay Shree Tea & Industries
  • Kesoram Industries Limited
  • Century Enka Limited
  • Century Textiles & Industries Limited

Apart from his industrial activities, Mr. Birla has made notable contributions through his social and institutional activities.

Educational Institution:
  • Mr. Birla is associated as Governor or Trustee with the following Institutions and takes active part in their working :
    • Birla Institute of Technology & Science, Pilani Student Strength 14,604
    • Birla Education Trust, Pilani (group) Student Strength 12,000
    • BITS, Bhiwani Student Strength 430
  • Following educational institutions have been established by Mr. & Mrs. B.K. Birla and in which they continue to take personal interest.
    • Birla Institute of Management Technology (BIMTECH), Greater Noida 800
    • Birla Vidya Vihar Trust, Calcutta 4,020
    • Birla Sanskriti Trust, Calcutta (3 schools) 5,472
    • Birla Vidya Mandir, Nainital 739
    • Birla Vidya Niketan, New Delhi 3,049
    • G.D. Birla Memorial School, Ranikhet 738
    • Ashok Hall, Ranikhet 325
  • Birla Technical Training Institute – Pilani
  • Institutions devoted to music, dancing, painting, other fine arts and literature:
    • Birla Academy of Art & Culture :
      Established in 1964 to promote visual arts, culture, literature and other fine arts. The Academy, in its ten-storied building, overlooking the famous “Rabindra Sarobar” in Calcutta, possesses a unique collection of ancient Indian sculptures, miniature paintings, bronzes, textiles, terracotta etc. There is also a gallery of International Modern Art. 30/35 programmes are covering different fields of fine arts, literature, lectures, discourses on religious and spiritual subjects, etc. are being held by this institution every year.
    • Swar Sangam – Calcutta, Schools for dance, music, paintings etc. – students strength 850.
    • Sangit Kala Mandir, Calcutta, An institution devoted to fine arts, literature, dramas, music, dance etc. with a total strength of 4500. About hundred functions are held every year.
    • Sangit Kala Mandir Trust – Calcutta, Owns two fully air-conditioned auditoriums with seating capacities of 1100 and 375.
  • Medical Institutions:
    • A TB and General Hospital in Ranchi.
    • Several outdoor dispensaries
    • Birla Pediatric Clinic in Addis Ababa
  • Miscellaneous:
    • Mahadevi Birla Mangal Niketan – This is a home for the senior citizens – capacity 72 persons. The foundation and the inaugural ceremonies were very kindly performed by Syt.Jyoti Basu.
    • Mahadevi Birla Kalyan Mandapam – Civic Center in Calcutta – provides facilities for marriage functions, lectures, discourses, meetings and other social activities.
    • The Temple of Understanding, Washington – Mr. Birla has been actively associated with this institution since its inception in 1960. The purpose of the Temple of Understanding is to foster education, communication and understanding among the world religions. Under his guidance the Temple of Understanding held a World Spiritual Summit Conference in Calcutta in October 1968 in which more that 120 religious and spiritual leaders from more than 20 countries participated. He was one of the sponsors of similar World Spiritual Summit Conference in Geneva (in 1970) and in New York (in 1971) in which a very large number of religious and spiritual leaders participated.
    • DHARMSHALAS AND GUEST HOUSES : About fifteen Guest Houses have been built for pilgrims at various holy places.
  • Mr. Birla is associated with many other public institutions.
  • Awards:
    Apart from the Ethiopian award, the following two awards have been conferred upon Mr. Birla:
  • “Officer in the order of Organge Nassau” by the Netherlands Government.
  • “Officer in the order of the Crown” by the Belgian Government.
  • Mr. Birla is an ardent lover of music, art, literature, sports and photography. Many of his photographs have been exhibited in several countries and some of them have been awarded medals and certificates of merit.
  • His collection of Indian Art (including the collection of Birla Academy of Art & Culture) is amongst the best private collections in India.
  • Mr. Birla is the Chairman of Swargashram Trust, Rishikesh which is ideally situated on about 100 acres of land on the banks of the Holy Ganga. Boarding and lodging arrangements are provided for 500 pilgrims at nominal charges.