Facts about Sushil Ansal
In 1960, the third-year students of St Stephen’s College, Sushil ansal walked out of the examination hall
having submitted their last answer sheets. Picnics were planned, as were holidays, or even
an immediate trip to the movies. Others discussed applying overseas for higher studies or –
that holy grail of generations of Stephanians – taking the civil services examination.
One of the students, a tall, gangly but obviously physically fit young man of 21, was part of
this conversation, yet away from it. He was game for a movie but sort of fixed on the future
course of his life.
His father, Mr. Chiranji Lal wanted him to study for the civil service examinations, but he
had decided that he would join the family contracting business instead, and would seek his destiny among bricks and stones.
The choice had not been smooth. His father felt the contracting business was not a very dignified one and left its practitioners vulnerable to the whims of junior engineers in the government. Yet, the son found the entire process of building, engaging and creative. So, his father decided to test him out. In 1957, in the six months between his final school examinations and entering college, Sushil was given charge of a construction of a house at 6 Link Road, near Jangpura, not far from the Jor Bagh residence.
A house was being constructed here by C.Lyal and Company and Sushil was to supervise the
work. It wasn’t smooth sailing. An accident occurred during the construction when a part of
the roof caved in. Though nobody was injured, but the incident was a setback which left
Sushil shaken. He carried out an assessment and realised that the structural design was at
fault. It had required the roof to bear more load than it could cope up with. In his
recommendation, he wrote that every structural design, for every project must compulsorily
undergo a third-party audit. This has now become a standard procedure of every Ansal
project. This was Sushil’s first business innovation – fairly remarkable for a young non-