Influential leaders serve as beams of inspiration, pointing the way for the youth in a world where the road to achievement can occasionally appear difficult and unclear. These extraordinary people, who come from various backgrounds, have the rare capacity to uplift and empower the younger generation. They act as role models by imparting insightful wisdom and life lessons that have the power to influence the future.
Within the sphere of Chartered Accountancy, where numbers and spreadsheets typically dominate the landscape, there exists a remarkable individual whose expertise transcends the world of finance. Shankar Ghanshamdas Andani, Co-founder of Saai & Company, is more than just a skilled professional; he is a compassionate soul dedicated to making the world a better place. His life’s journey is proof of the transformative potential of commitment, compassion, and a persistent dedication to social welfare.
He helps communities, the less fortunate, and those in need by giving them comfort. His life narrative, which began on April 3, 1978, in Ahmednagar, Maharashtra, is a monument to resiliency, diligence, and unflinching resolve. He absorbed values and traits that would influence his unique journey while growing up in a blended home with younger siblings and a sister.
He was born into extreme poverty and had to start from nothing and rose through the ranks. To make ends meet, he took on a variety of domestic tasks, even working in a well for a wage of 10 to 20 rupees. These encounters gave him a strong sense of empathy for the unfortunate and a desire to assist them.
He endured many difficulties as a young boy, but he never wavered in his resolve to give his siblings access to a good education. To make money meet, Shankar and his mother took on various household jobs, but their struggles only strengthened his resolve. He even worked at a printing press after school hours to supplement his money until he landed a job at a garment store, where he made a respectable Rs. 300 per month. He also put in additional hours at a factory that made pockets and other products in order to pay for his siblings’ and his own education. His extraordinary resiliency and self-made character are demonstrated by these situations.
Academic Pursuits and Philanthropy
Shankar turned to education as a ray of hope and pursued it assiduously. He has earned several academic degrees, including the FCA, ICWA, MBA, M. Com, SET, LLB, FAFD, and GDCA, and he has taken the Ph.D. examination. He was one of just two people in his district to pass the State Eligibility Test (SET), which the Maharashtra government instituted in 2004. After passing his Chartered Accountancy examinations in 2006, he had already started down the path to becoming one of Ahmednagar’s top CAs.
His quest involves much more than just his own accomplishment. He regularly oversaw the financial operations of numerous organizations, including schools, hospitals, and non-profit organizations, from 2006 until 2023.
He also spoke online for the IIU, other trusts, and financial organizations, demonstrating his dedication to both service and education. By paying their tuition, giving them uniforms, and providing stationery, Shankar even gave many disadvantaged kids free education.
A Man of Perfection
Shankar never gave up, devoting himself to his family, work, profession, and community despite the enormous burdens placed on his shoulders. His commitment and perseverance helped him rise to the position of one of Ahmednagar’s most renowned Chartered Accountants, and his reputation for excellence only grew.
But Shankar Ghanshamdas Adnani’s unshakeable faith in God is what actually distinguishes him. He has a strong desire to give back to the Almighty, who has so generously blessed him. He submitted an application for a job in 2008 at the Shirdi Sai Baba Mandir, one of India’s holiest shrines. He was given an advising position on the temple committee, where he has worked ever since.
It is admirable how dedicated he is to upholding both his professional and ethical principles. He came up with a brilliant idea instead of turning away temple authorities who needed his help with accounting and taxation. Although he did not charge for his services, the money they would have spent on them was donated to the temple.
Shankar has provided this selfless service to more than 365 spiritual institutions over the years, including temples, gurudwaras, mosques, schools, hospitals, and NGOs, conserving various devotees’ donations and earning recognition under the India Trust Act in the process.
Shankar’s commitment to his art and to helping others has resulted in a legacy of excellence with 71 world records in the auditing industry. Prestigious institutions, including the London Book of Records, the America Book of Records, the Asia Book of Records, the India Book of Records, the Worldwide Book of Records, and many others, have recognised him. He holds a record-breaking number of global records, more than any other Indian.
An astonishing 1600 honours and recognitions are a result of his relentless commitment and unyielding passion. These honours include 21 lifetime achievement awards, 300 international prizes, and praise from the United Nations Office. Furthermore, he has been honoured with a certificate of appreciation from the President of the United Nations of America.
Financial Management of Spiritual Establishments
Shankar’s altruistic dedication to bettering society has enabled him to impart financial management skills to numerous spiritual establishments. Donations from the public are now directed towards worthy causes, benefitting 365 institutions, including temples, mosques, gurudwaras, schools, hospitals, and more.
Empowering the Mass
Shankar Andani collaborated closely with underprivileged farmers, playing a crucial role in establishing 511 farmer-producer companies. This support has reached over 500,000 farmers, providing them invaluable assistance and transforming their lives.
As the Secretary of Gaushala, he extends his heart and soul into nurturing the well-being of over 56 beloved cows. His guidance and assistance have been instrumental in establishing and promoting 65 Gaushalas, serving the cause of protecting cows.
He runs an orphanage that provides shelter and care for 36 abandoned children. From providing shelter to education and other necessities, he ensures that these children receive the care and support they need.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, he provided free food to more than 200,000 individuals, alleviating their hardships during these challenging times.
Shankar served as a Technical Director of Ahmednagar’s largest scheduled cooperative bank. He used his knowledge and experience to manage the financial needs of the underprivileged, ensuring they received the financial guidance and support they needed.
He serves as a trustee of organizations like Sadguru Swami Teuram Mandir Trust and Sindh Hind Sewa Mandal, which provide assistance to impoverished and destitute individuals, including free food and shelter.
As the President of a Marathi medium school in Maharashtra, Shankar provides free education to underprivileged children in grades one to seven. The school has been operational for ten years, and he plans to expand it to include an English medium program.
Not only this, he has provided Kafan/Shroud to 1000 unattended dead bodies, ensuring they receive a dignified farewell during the last seven years.
Excellence and Social Welfare
In recognition of his exceptional contributions to society, Shankar was invited to be a guest speaker at the prestigious G20 summit held in New Delhi on April 8. His journey embodies the essence of a diligent Chartered Accountant who has embarked on a noble quest to advocate for improved financial management and social welfare.
Through his dedication, selflessness, and expertise, he has generously volunteered his services to diverse entities such as temples, schools, NGOs, and various segments of society. His enduring legacy serves as a beacon of hope and inspiration for others to follow in his footsteps.
Shankar Ghanshamdas Andani’s life is a testament to the boundless potential of the human spirit, where a Chartered Accountant becomes a symbol of compassion and change in a world that desperately needs it. His unwavering commitment to serving others, his remarkable achievements in the field of audit, and his countless contributions to society are an inspiration to us all.
In Shankar’s story, we find not only a Chartered Accountant but a true humanitarian whose actions light the path for others to follow, leaving a lasting legacy of compassion and service.