Saturday, May 13, 2017


The business house of Surajmals, trading primarily in diamonds and other precious stones was founded by Surajmal Lallubhai Mehta in Bombay in 1895. The Madras branch, which was opened in 1916, was managed by Surajmal’s nephew, Jaisinghlal.

Surajmal’s connections with Madras however went beyond the diamond trade. In the 1930s, it was involved in the gramophone records business, with the setting up of a company in called Musical Products Limited with a capital of Rs.50000. The Broadcast label was taken on licence from Vocalion of England. To establish the connection with the diamond trade, the Broadcast logo featured a diamond. Prominent artistes who recorded with them included M.S.Subbalakshmi and her mother, Mysore T.Chowdiah and Rajamanickam Pillai. However, this venture did not last long due to dull sales and this company was wound up in 1937. Surajmals continued in the diamond trade for long after. Their showroom building survives almost intact, operating today as the NSC Bose Road branch of Saravana Bhavan.

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