A claim about the sweets and snacks company Haldiram’s is viral on social media. As per the claim, the company is now under the control of Muslims and is owned by a Muslim individual. The elaborate message claims that Haldiram had a salt-making shop. His son Ghasi Lal later opened a namkeen (snacks) factory. Ghasi Lal’s sons Yogesh and Naresh Khandelwal sold this factory to a Muslim man. An appeal to boycott Haldiram’s has been made in the message.
A Facebook user shared the message on a group named ‘Kangna Ranaut’.
It was also widespread on Twitter.
*हल्दी राम इसके दादा थे और उन्होंने ही नमकीन बनाने का कार्य किया जो कि अच्छा चला तो हल्दी राम के पुत्र घासी लाल ने इसे फेक्ट्री लगा कर
— V।JAY हिंदु 100% FB Hindutva Rashtra prem (@VKGAUTAM4) April 12, 2022
Alt News performed a keyword search, but we could not find any news reports corroborating the claim about Haldiram’s being sold.
We then checked the company’s ‘About’ section which states, “Our origins can be traced back to a small namkeen shop in Bikaner founded by Ganga Bishan Agarwal (Haldiram Ji). This modest shop quickly gained popularity and scaled up to meet a booming demand for its unique-tasting bhujia. Building on this legacy, his grandson, our pioneer Mr. Shiv Kishan Agrawal steered the business towards the heights it has tasted today. Determined to take bhujia beyond the boundaries of Bikaner, he shifted base to Nagpur in 1970.”
We found a Forbes report carrying the family tree of Ganga Bishan Agarwal. There is no mention of “Ghasi Lal and Naresh and Yogesh Khandelwal” – the names that appear in the viral message.
According to the report, Ganga Bhishen Agarwal (Haldiram) had two sons. He successfully expanded the business to Kolkata in the 1950s with the help of his sons Moolchand and Rameshwar Lal. And in the coming three decades, Moolchand’s sons Shiv Kishan Agrawal, Manohar Lal Agarwal, and Madhusudhan Agarwal further expanded the business to Nagpur and Delhi respectively.
On April 14, 2022, Moneycontrol quoted Haldiram’s Chairman Manoharlal Agarwal as saying that the company is planning to soon launch its IPO. Agrawal had also mentioned this in an interview with CNBC-TV18. However, he did not mention anything about the company being sold. In fact, he detailed his plans to expand the business further.
Alt News found a list of the directors of the three Haldiram companies registered in Delhi, Nagpur, and Kolkata on the Ministry of Corporate Affairs website. None of the names are Muslim.
A few days ago, Suresh Chavhanke, Editor-in-chief of Sudarshan News, alleged a conspiracy and accused Haldiram’s of hiding information about its products using “Urdu” text on the packaging. However, the information was printed in Arabic and it is a common practice when exporting products to West Asian countries.
In conclusion, the claim that Haldiram’s has been sold to a Muslim man is false. The viral message has been used to appeal for a boycott of the company’s products.
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