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India Insured

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The life insurance market in India remains highly complex, even in this early stage of development. Written in a precise, dry and academic style, Life Insurance In India is a meticulously crafted introduction to the subject. The author, H. Sadhak, an economist well respected in the financial services industry in South Asia, displays his impressive personal knowledge and professional commitment to the field. Sadhak had worked with Life Insurance Corporation of India and in the government.

The first three of the seven chapters discuss the nature of the insurance market in India and how it is responding to the rapid changes of globalisation and domestic wealth-generation. From introducing definitions of financial markets, gross domestic savings and globalisation to charts displaying personal disposable income and life insurance premiums, Sadhak's discussions follow a logical progression from the basic to the complex, neatly tied in with chronology. The data-backed information impartation of the book is both complete and relevantly connected to the author's point of discussion.

A lengthy chapter is devoted to the potentially thorny issue of governance in life insurance. A comprehensive listing of relevant legislative, academic and corporate governance text forms an excellent reference for professionals. Sadhak's professional knowledge and personal perspective add value to the book that targets the growing cadre of insurance managers.

Finally, however, the absence of a subjective take from the author, who has played a key role in the Indian life insurance industry, leaves the reader looking for conclusions and guidance.

The author is COO, Bharti AXA Life Insurance

(This story was published in Businessworld Issue Dated 21-09-2009)