Neeraj Ghei, director, Select Infrastructure pays a tribute to her father, Inder Sharma, former chairman of Select Infrastructure and Sita World Travel, and a doyen of the Indian travel industry, who passed away recently. He is remembered with great fondness and respect
Living life on his own terms, Inder Sharma was a strong advocate of the motto, “Whatever you do, you must try to get into the best of the league in that profession.” And this is exactly what he did!
He not only took the Indian travel and tourism industry to greater heights, but after a successful sale of SITA, he also founded Select Infrastructure, going on to play a huge role in the establishment of one of the biggest and most admired shopping centres in the country. A business he established when he was in his 70s and yet he was flagbearer of all things progressive and futuristic in an industry that was completely different to what he had done all the years before that. For him, client satisfaction and honesty to one’s profession were of utmost importance and he approached a brick and mortar business with the same ground rules as a service business, making Select Citywalk the most iconic and loved mall over the last 10 years. And despite all the success, he was always a people’s person – grounded and humble.
It was qualities like these, clubbed with hard work and dedication, that helped the pioneer scale greater heights. Like a true visionary, he had his finger on the pulse of the sectors he was associated with, and also liked to keep himself abreast with the world outside. To that end, he loved travelling – he felt it gave him the opportunity to meet new people, learn new things and, thus, grow both personally and professionally. The feats he accomplished are there for everyone to see. The former chairman of Select Infrastructure has numerous awards to his credit, including the prestigious Padma Shri, the Holder of the Keys to Britain Award (he is the only Indian to have received the honour) and many more.
Having left behind a legacy of hard work and commitment, the entrepreneur will always be missed. He always remembered his father’s advice, “Treat people from all walks of life just the way you’d like them to treat you.” RIP.