Yoga guru Swami Ramdev has said that he has already prepared a plan of succession for his Rs 10,000 crore Patanjali group, saying that his “successor” (uttaradhikari) will be a team of nearly 500 sadhus trained by him.
Replying to questions from Rajat Sharma in the TV show Aap Ki Adalat, to be telecast tonight on India TV, 52-year-old Swami Ramdev said: “I never think small. I think big. I think about our nation 500 years hence. I think about Patanjali group for the next 100 years. I will be leaving my successor when I go (Main jaane ke baad uttaradhikari chhod ke jaa raha hoon). “My successor (uttaradhikari) will not be a businessman (vyaapari) or a worldly man (sansaari), it will be a team of nearly 500 sadhus whom I have trained.”
The yoga guru, who along with his closest associate Acharya Balkrishna, has created the massive FMCG group Patanjali within a short span of time, outlined his future plans, while indicating that his group would soon start selling jeans, trousers, kurtas, shirts, suitings, sportswear and yoga wear. “In the next two years, Patanjali will create Rs 1 lakh crore production capacity. Presently our Haridwar facility has Rs 15,000 crore production capacity and the Tezpur facility has Rs 25,000 crore capacity. Our new facilities are coming up in Noida, Nagpur, Indore and Andhra Pradesh. We have 50 small units where we make edible oils, salt, etc. Even if we attain Rs 1 lakh crore production capacity, it will be hardly 10 per cent of the total market size of Rs 10 lakh crore.” The yoga guru said: “By 2018-19, Patanjali will overtake Unilever and others as the topmost brand, and by 2020-21 Patanjali plans to become the world’s largest FMCG brand.”
The yoga guru rejected charges that he was getting favours for his group due to his “political connections”.
“I can say with authority that I have not take a single paisa worth advantage from the Modi government. Nor did I try to obstruct the government’s work. Had I wanted, I could have achieved any dream, a politician normally seeks. But for me, politics is not a profession, it’s a mission. I intervened in politics due to exigency (Aaapad dharma) only when I found that bad people (burey log) should not rule any more. I never used, nor will I ever use my political connections for my company.”
Swami Ramdev said, his Patanjali group had acquired 450 acre land in Noida by paying Rs 400 crore. “It was not a gift given to a beggar. I paid 100 per cent for whatever land I bought. In Nagpur, our group paid Rs 25 lakh for setting up an orange juice extraction plant. The government orange juice extraction plant had stopped working. I challenge Unilever, Nestle and others. I am ready to give Rs 12 lakh subsidy, come and set up a plant there”
In a remark that could create controversy, the yoga guru said cow urine should be acceptable to Muslims too. “It is written in Quran that cow urine can be used for treatment. Some people are targeting Patanjali by saying that it is a Hindu company. Did I ever target Hamdard (set up by Hamid brothers)? I have full support for Hamdard, and Himalaya drug company too. Farooq bhai of Himalaya group even donated land to me for setting up yoga gram. If some people level such charges, they will only be creating a wall of hate.” The yoga guru appealed to the Finance Minister to lower the GST on cow ghee and butter, that has been raised from 5 pc to 12 pc. If the government lowers GST on cow ghee and butter, I will lower the prices by Rs 25 to 50.