The Initial Public Offering of the Lok Sabha in early 2002 was the best tribute the nation could pay to the memory of its greatest reformer. For several years, Harshad Mehta had single-mindedly planned the IPOs. He worked out the modalities and convinced MPs that it would be to their benefit to sell themselves (that wasn’t too tough actually!). He persuaded investors that owning shares in a minister made as much sense as owning shares in a software blue-chip.
If he had throttled back the work schedule, he might not have suffered a fatal collapse, minutes after he drove his Maybach home from a New Year’s eve party on December 31, 2001. Ironically, Harshadbhai was an extremely good driver. He never pushed his fancy cars beyond their (considerable) limits. If only he had treated his body with the same respect.