There are so many memories one collects over the years and at a time like this, they are constantly playing in my mind as a movie reel.
When someone is a part of your life since you were a teenager, they become a fabric of your life and that’s what you are...... very much a part of our life. Your presence is strong and may it always remain. Plus, I have the added advantage of being married to (one of ) your son who has adopted so many of your passions from your love for books, jazz music, and the color pink to your charisma, charm and confidence. He has so much of you.
As a father figure, I learned so much from observing you:
1. Chase your dreams and make them happen. Don’t wait for someone else to make them happen
2. Cast a wide network. Be there for them.
3. If someone says "no", don't accept it. Ask again!
4. It’s never too late to make changes
5. Love has many languages. Not everyone speaks the same language
6. Have many different passions and interests
Dad- you will be missed but never forgotten. The twinkle in your eye, your sense of fashion from your double-breasted suits to your silk kurtas to your work ethic and visionary mindset.
We all (mom, Niks, Dhruv, Chandrika, Rhea, Samaira, Zayan, Neel and I) will take care of each other, listen to your favourite Jazz, enjoy reading in your library the million books you collected with love over so many years, visit your beloved La Martiniere school often and carry on your legacy in ways you would be proud.
May your soul rest in peace.
With love and gratitude,
That's how one felt on hearing the sad news. We too share your grief as these final partings are really too painful to bear. Our journey with Gudi-Prem goes back to our dating years (64 -65), and through thick and thin, we hung on! Unforgettable memories! Simply loved the msgs sent by Nikhil and Dhruv. Got a lump in my throat! Yes my brave friend, keep up your good work and do convey our condolences to all.
Love and Prayers, Always
Anu Khatti and Family
I first met PB as a young girl, when I was still in school dating Dhruv. He was always warm and friendly. When Dhruv and I got married a few years later, he welcomed me into the family with love, affection, warmth and forbade me from calling him uncle, as I had been doing thus far, and insisted that I switch to dad.
When I joined EIG (after some cajoling by him) our interaction grew. I watched him run and grow his business with a single-minded obsession. He was always looking to grow. We had several disagreements over the years, but, as I look back now, I see only the good – the principled, meticulous, tireless work ethic of this extraordinary man. So many people have spoken of his charm in the last few days, and I was witness to it several times. While waiting for a meeting, he would strike up a conversation with the secretary and inquire about their background, their families, and their lives. And, almost instantly, he would leave another person charmed. Even after the briefest interaction he left an indelible mark on people which they long remembered. Such was the PB magic.
While work was always his biggest passion, PB had many interests. He collected stamps and coins, he loved collecting books and loved his library at home – not to mention all the book readings he hosted over the last few years – he enjoyed cooking (a memory of him cooking “Paranthas” for Dhruv while we were in college in LA using a bottle as a “belan” comes to mind), jazz was always a constant, as was his insatiable quest for knowledge and new information on a wide range of topics. But there was no greater love than “Gudi.” Nothing at home or work functioned for him without mom. And while he may not always have spelt it out, he knew that if ever the phrase ‘Behind every great man is a great woman’ held true, that was certainly the case when it came to PB & AB.
I will miss you dad. I will miss having lunch together in the office, as we have had everyday for the last so many years, I will miss you coming into my office to check in, I will miss your presence and knowing you were there. But there is happiness and relief in knowing that you are now at peace.
PB was always open to new ideas and was always up for a challenge – he hated the word ‘no’ and we found much common ground in his up-for-anything approach. PB started Exhibitions India in 1987, with the objective of promoting India, and now – 30+ years, innumerable exhibitions, awards, partnerships and ventures later – the Exhibitions India Group stands for integrity, it stands for setting new benchmarks and it stands for ‘excellence.’ His legacy lives on in us, and we are determined to continue to grow EIG with the very same verve and spirit.
Dadaji was an inspiring man. He was always the Heart of everywhere he was. He was always healthy and strong and never gave up. He loved those near him and, in my eyes, he is an inspiration.
It was indeed the will power and determination of our dear friend to combat the disease bravely and that is the extended time we all spent together and now the future moments will be indeed spent in remembering him for his qualities and values. Most of his friends will remember him in their individual context and own experiences and such views put together will define who Prem Behl was and what was his legacy. Prem Behl the Great.
Bunty & Ajay Mehra
Pat and I are very saddened by Prem’s passing. We are sending you and family our sincerest condoléances. Around 33 years ago, I met Prem the first time as you know. Everything destined him for success. His forward looking intellect, his insatiable curiosity, his gentle manners yet competitive spirit all contributed to what my Indian colleagues already call a visionary! RIP, Prem!
Prem Behl was a kind person, a personal friend, a neighbour for a short while. He had built up a very credible Exhibtions business. He also had great passion for promoting La Martiniere and had built a unique and quite astounding collection of Martinian memorabilia — old books, sketches etc. COVID perhaps compounded his illness. He will be missed. May his soul rest in peace.
Raghav Chandra IAS (Retd)
Truly sorry to learn this.. Prem was a wonderful, cheerful, ever hospitable and friendly soul, with a great love for the Mart, its history and for Martinians everywhere.. He is going to be be greatly missed by all who knew him and held him in high regard.. RIP..
Sunit Tandon, Director, India Habitat Centre
PB Sir – nothing short of magic for all of us. His mere presence lit up the entire office. Our hearts yearn to hear his ‘Good Morning Beta’ once more. His guidance, farsightedness, leadership and desire to shape us all towards perfection is unparalleled. Even though we have all been offered guidance earlier but your kindness, discipline and most of all the passion to bring out the best from us cannot be matched ever. You are the epitome of love, generosity and excellence.
Now that you’ve left us for a better place, our world is a darker place but our lives have been enriched by your leadership. Thank you, Sir, for being you!
We cannot express in words how much we will miss you!
Bijay, Aanchal, Vikas, Rahul R., Rahul K., Sunil, Manjeet, Mohit, Sanjeev K., Sanjeev Y., Prateek, Shelendar
Web Department, Exhibitions India Group
I have spoken at various EIG conferences in the past and that is when I met Behl sahab for the first time. I have fond memories of him as an extremely soft spoken, very gracious gentleman. I remember being in the Speaker's Lounge waiting for my turn to speak and he would come over to meet all the speakers individually and thank them for their efforts and was always a very gracious host. The exhibitions industry will not be the same without the tall personality of Mr. Behl.
May his soul rest in peace and may his legacy be carried on with the EIG group touching new heights in his honour.
My deepest condolences to his family and his staff, who I am told he always treated as his own family.
Discussions ranging from topics as wide as Vedanta principles to Bhagalpur silks, Seabiscuit and Paul Revere, progress in horticulture and impromptu history lessons on the way to meetings; I will miss the fist bumps, the after-lunch candy and our conversations about anything & everything under the sun. Most of all, I'll miss your hearty laugh.
Rest in peace, mentor & legend.
My heartfelt and sincere condolences to the Behl family. May his Soul rest in Peace.
Even though my connection with him was almost entirely professional, having carved a collaboration during the early days of the ISP industry association and EI, at a personal level, we shared a very affable relationship. I will always remember the easy and friendly manner of our interactions.
I am one of the fortunate person, got the opportunity to work under PV sir’s guidance and acquainted with extraordinary world of exhibitions industry. Though the stint was less, albeit I was deeply moved by his charismatic aura, visionary leadership which broadened my horizon.
PB sir will always be remembered as a great visionary and a wonderful human being. My heartfelt condolences to AB Maam and the family.
We are pained to note Mr Prem Behl has left for his heavenly abode. I had known Mr Behl for a few decades and have always been very proud of his achievements in making Exhibitions India , a world class company. May his soul rest in peace. Our fond remembrances and deepest condolences to the family members.
Anil K Agarwal
Who takes a chance on a guy who has joined the organization just 8 months back, to set up and head the regional operations of a new office?
Mr. Behl did! When I asked him why he is betting on me, his response was - "Because your are focused and hardworking." I have worked with bosses who put their nose to the grindstone but I have not worked with someone who made it look like fun! Observing his work ethics, I have learnt how to discipline myself better especially when I am given a long rope.
Whenever, I would come to Delhi, he will invite me for a bite to eat at his place. I will forever treasure those great interactions over lunch encompassing a variety of business and personal topics.
When my Daddy passed away at a young age, he was there by my side and would call me everyday to check in on my wellbeing. I am so misty eyed writing this.........
The last time we spoke was about a year ago when he had concluded a meeting with the CEO of a Biotech Association and he thought of me to get some insights. Such humility is very rare in this world today.
It is true that in a world full of grey, Mr. Behl saw things only in Black & White. I have carried these thoughts with me and have helped me render better value to organizations that I have worked with.
Rest in Peace, Sir. You will be in my heart forever.
Dear Anita, I learnt recently of the sad demise of your dear husband Prem.
Have been reading the wonderful tributes from family, friends, colleagues..
You were blessed to have him in your life..
RIP Prem Behl.
May the Almighty give you and your family strength and courage to bear his loss and carry on the work he was doing.
Heartfelt condolences !
Anita Prakash Lokur
I met PB Sir 14 years back when I started working at EI. A very dynamic person with full of energy which encouraged everyone around him. He used to share many of his stories. I will always remember your best advise, that there is no age to learn anything new, no age to start anything new.. I had learnt alot from you. U r an inspiration for me.
I remember, we being so young still used the lift and you being in your 70s never used it. I will miss all your teasing that I have a BF in Russia and Ms. Paris.
You will be always in my memories.
I have known Prem for over two decades and I do miss his exuberance and sense of loyalty to friends and associates. He was more than a friend to me, especially when I was a rookie journalist treading the complex path of TMT beat as a media correspondent way back in the mid-90s- a time when very few people (except Prem) talked about convergence and technology, leave alone digital dominance.
As I grew in life and changed professions, Prem was always there, guiding when necessary and also extending a helping hand discreetly, wherever needed. Adieu my friend. But I will always miss the hearty laugh and the mischievous smile. Rest in peace and explore if you can have a digital bridge between life and afterlife realms.
“Peace, my heart, let the time for the parting be sweet.
Let it not be a death but completeness.
Let love melt into memory and pain into songs.
Let the flight through the sky end in the folding of the wings over the nest.
Let the last touch of your hands be gentle like the flower of the night.
Stand still, O Beautiful End, for a moment, and say your last words in silence.
I bow to you and hold up my lamp to light you on your way.”
Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore
A week has passed since our very own Prem left this material world for his heavenly abode in the festive month of December,2020!
At such a time, it seems vain to try to express one’s feelings..they are all too overwhelming!
I have had the privilege of knowing Prem intimately for over 15 long years and his taking leave of us so very prematurely is a matter of personal tragedy for me. Prem by his personality, his example, his personal charm and his ready helping hand over so many years had endeared himself to all of us in a truly magnificent manner. He was a man of letters, a perfect gentleman, a graceful, gracious and well meaning soul with a golden heart and a health freak who was always in the pink of condition! One of the most remarkable qualities he possessed was his complete lack of prejudice and the warm welcome which he spontaneously gave to anyone visiting his majestic home and to young people and new and novel ideas. Right from the very moment I met Prem for the very first time, I conceived a deep and abiding admiration for his razor sharp intellect, his tireless zest for work, his discernible pertinacity, his innate simplicity and his disarming personal charm. Prem was an exceptional person with a brilliant and wonderfully elegant mind. He was the perfect combination of intellect, integrity, spirituality, humanity and humility. None of us could enter his presence without being aware both of his warmth, grace and dignity and of his handsome “Prince Charming” looks and effervescent smile.
He always considered me as a younger brother and was never tired of lauding what he always described as my “encyclopaedic memory”, my effortless command over the English language and my easy familiarity with the nuances of western classical music. In a moment of helpless nostalgia, I photogenically remember the very first day I met him at a Hindu College Old Students Association function way back in the year 2004. He asked me inquisitively, “Where did you learn to speak such good English?” I answered with amazing gumption, “You have to thank my Granny for that who brought me up like an English boy in a Victorian setting with a tough hand and an even tougher wooden ruler”. Then I told him all about “Granny”, the grand old English lady tutoress who belonged to the 19th century and proudly bore the name Elisabeth Rose Anderson. I used to affectionately call her “Granny” and she literally taught me how to write, read and speak in English by hitting the knuckles of my fingers with a stiff wooden ruler whenever I faltered or floundered. Prem looked visibly impressed! When I told him that I was a Western Classical music lover, he was simply overwhelmed. A few days later, he invited me to his old residence in Defence Colony and proudly to his wonderful family. Thereafter, he used to pop across to my humble former residence in Delhi in Chittaranjan Park whenever he fancied and we would spend hours listening to my music cds and dvds that he would assiduously select from my inexhaustible music library over delectable Harveys Bristol Cream rich and full-bodied sherry and crunchy cookies and my full throated renditions from the English classics and studied mimicry of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. He used to unfailingly invite me to all the Convergence India and other conferences hosted by the formidable Exhibitions India group (and I had the privilege of speaking at some of these conferences!) within the iconic confines of Pragati Maidan, the vibrant Old Martinians dinners and the breezy book reading sessions at the basement of his new residence in Defence Colony where he possessed and nurtured a truly mind boggling library. He used to plume himself in telling me that he used to treat and care for each and every one of his books as if they were his own “little children”! And he used to very often invite me for lunch to his opulent, artistically designed office embedded in the heart of the Okhla Industrial Estate where he used to serve me sumptuous tongue tickling “ghar ka khana” in the well crafted lunch room.
Prem will live long, mellow and gracious in the hearts and minds of all those whose lives he touched in some way or the other as well as all those like me who knew him, loved him and revered him in this world and in the annals of the tumultuous times in which we live..like those long extinguished stars whose fires still give us light!
At the end of this rather immense tribute, I cannot do better than turn to the moving words of Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi, known popularly as “Rumi”, the monumental Persian poet, jurist, scholar, theologian and Sufi mystic, “Goodbyes are only for those who love with their eyes. Because for those who love with heart and soul there is no such thing as separation.”
I pray to the Almighty that Prem’s noble soul may now rest in eternal peace, bearing in mind the timeless message of the Bhagwad Gita :
“Acchedyo yam adahyo yam akledyo sosya eva ca Nityah sarva-gatah sthanur acalo yam sanatanah”
“The soul is indestructible, the soul is incombustible, insoluble and unwitherable. The soul is eternal, all pervasive, unmodifiable, immovable and primordial”
In grief for losing such a fine person. Will never forgive his smiling face everyday while setting up Exhibitions India at C 390. Surely a gem we will always miss.
Anu, Karan and Mrs. SR Singh
Hope we could have spoken just once more. There was so much more to talk about. There was so much more to learn from you. I cherish the time spent with you. I hope we will become the person you wanted us to be.
If there is other side it will be illuminated like never before. So long, Rest in peace.
Way back in 1976, Mr Prem Behl was the National Sales Manager for Usha Sewing Machines. A very senior position at a rather young age. I joined as a Sales Officer Trainee and was straightaway put under his control for the 2 year training period that was eventually cut down to just 14 months. During this period Behl Saheb was my Monitor and Mentor at the company. His Training, Guidance and his Motivation paved the way for my career. Rarely do you come across an always bright and smiling person with twinkling eyes and a positive body language.
He was an action man. Decide and act on the spot. Once on my first trip to Aligarh, the dealer was extremely upset and almost abused me for not solving his problem of wooden sewing machine bases which had collected over a long period. As the branch office was not supportive and I was feeling letdown and guilty, I promised the dealer that I would go back only after this problem was solved or else I would quit my job. I then called up Behl Saheb from the dealers shop and Sir said, Arun give me 5 minutes and I will get back to you and true to his style, his call came and he told me, Arun, you stay back at Aligarh, a truckload of wooden bases will reach Aligarh tomorrow morning.
My position in the eyes of the dealer grew manifold and we became friends. There are many such instances that are valuable memories which I deeply treasure.
Behl Saheb's training made many of us successful sales professionals. My sincere condolences to the bereaved family.
PB, as he was fondly known, was a vibrant and energetic personality that left a lasting impression on anyone he met. His positive energy and enthusiasm always inspired everyone to give their best.
While my association with him was brief, I considered it an invaluable opportunity for me to learn from someone who was an ocean of knowledge!
His keen desire to groom the potential of all who worked with him has carved the career of many during the decades.
On a personal level, PB provided immense support and encouragement during my difficult times. I wish I had the opportunity to learn more from this great man. But I choose to celebrate all that I did take away from him and remember him as a great teacher and mentor!
We condole the sad demise of Prem Behl ji. An impressive person of impeccable character and thoughts and gave the much needed fillip to the exhibition industry in India. Our thoughts are with his family and Exhibitions India team. May God grant eternal peace to his noble soul.
Ashwin B. Pandya, SG, ICID
I remember sitting with PB sir and our discussion on history, Your wish to travel east european countries, your wish to do seva in Bangla Sahib Gurudwara, your love for your father, a colonel who stood up against General over bribery.|
Thank you sir for giving me history books for reading and the love and learning i received from you. I will always remember you.
I was shattered by the news of him leaving us on Sunday. It’s my personal loss, I lost my Guru, Mentor my source of inspiration. To me PB sir was always like my father who use to guide me in my personal and professional life. PB and my relationship was something extraordinary and my bond with him was special.
I still remember meeting him on reception desk back in 2006 on my interview day, “You are nicely and brightly dressed young man” he said. I was fortunate to have worked closely with PB Sir for more than 12 years and there was not a single day passed having not learned something new. Travelling with him was much fun (fortunate to travel along for many trips), we use discuss all from business, sports, politics and interesting "boys" talk :)
When PB called me last year and said he missed me calling at “061” was heart touching. I regret not meeting him when visited office few months back. Tea was due...
PB sir was such an incredible person, he was man of ethics and principles, ocean of ideas, passionate and there were no half ways. A true leader & legend!
My heart goes out to AB Ma’am and entire family your loss is irreplaceable. PB sir left too quickly and too early.
From my deepest!
PB’s - BJ
As a family friend of Mrs and Mr Prem Behl, I am deeply sad and shocked to know the demise of Shri Behl Ji. In my professional capacity and as an individual, I had the opportunity to meet Shri Prem Behl Ji a no. of times and found him a thorough Gentleman with deep knowledge and understanding in all areas of the life and fully committed fir EI and the well being of his family. I pray God to give strength to his entire family in this hour of grief.
PB was my first boss. I remember walking into the Annexe (EI office then) at his residence at E-6, Defence Colony on 10th January 1992 for my first job interview. He made me feel relaxed and comfortable right through his discussion with me. He was leaving for a business trip to Hongkong and asked me to formally join ten days later – but for those 10 days he gave me loads of material to go through to understand the exhibition business.
My 20+ years at EI gave me the opportunity to learn the ABC of the exhibition industry from a pioneer in the business. PB was a hard taskmaster, a great mentor and guide. He encouraged me to take up sales and marketing and there was no better practical experience to learn the nuances of sales than going with him for meetings. He encouraged us to read to broaden our knowledge – he would regularly share news articles and also lend us books. He lived the saying “Learning never stops… it continues throughout life”. He had a jovial side too, and I remember him cracking jokes and regaling us with anecdotes from his life.
He would enquire about the wellbeing of my parents and would promptly give me suggestions regarding any treatment that they required.
The last time I met PB was at an exhibition in October last year and we chatted briefly. Though I was surprised to see him in a Kurta for the first time (as I remember him always looking dapper in business suits), he managed to carry off this new look equally well.
PB, you will be missed but never forgotten...
My heartfelt condolences to Anita, Nikhil, Dhruv and the entire family.
Dear Anita, Nikhil and Dhruv,
We were very saddened to learn of Prem’s passing away. While we knew he had been unwell, we hope the end was peaceful.
On behalf of Reva and myself and all the members of The Wine Society, please accept our heartfelt condolences and May God give all of you the strength in this hour to bear this loss.
His decision making, his attention to detail, his knowledge, his wisdom, his perfection, his infectious personality- a leader who always led from the front.
Words are not just enough to express what I feel within.
A great to loss to the Exhibition industry, and a personal loss to many like me.
Dear Anita, Behl and Laroia family. We were very saddened and shocked to hear of the demise of dear Prem. He is in a much better place. May his soul rest in eternal peace! ...And God gives you the strength to bear the loss. Please accept our deepest condolences.
Brij and Cheena.
Dear Guddi, Nikhil and Dhruv,
I just heard the sad news. Our deepest condolences.
We will miss him.
Love, Anna and Ravi
CV Ravi and Anna
Very happy to have worked with PB Sir & his organisation.Thank you for the opportunity may your soul RIP
The Exhibition Industry will always miss your presence Sir.
Prem Chacha had a super sense of humour. During my college days in Delhi , I was fortunate to enjoy his everlasting smile which I will miss. I felt his deep hospitality and comfort each time I visited him . Like Nikhil and Dhruv aptly say he will be missed but never forgotten. Rest in peace chacha lots of love always.
Still can’t believe the shocking news of sad demise of PB Sir!
A thorough gentleman, charismatic leader, a visionary, a polymath, full of compassion and warmth, role model for many and what not....
Will miss you Sir ! You will always be in our found memories and prayers. Blessed to have known you.
Condolence to AB Ma’am and kin.
Prem & I grew up together from 3rd standard onwards in La Martiniere College Lucknow.His loss very great to me personally and all whose lives he touched.Our parents also were known to all.May the Almighty grant peace to the departed soul and to the family.
Dr. Surendra Kumar Pachauri, IAS Retd
I am blessed enough to be a part of Exhibitions India Group. Blessed to work under great Boss and Mentor, PB Sir and AB Ma'am. EI was and will be a second family to me. Will miss you PB Sir. Rest in Peace.
Heartfelt condolences to AB Ma'am and Family.
I was fortunate to come in contact with PB in the year 1990.
My respect for him grew in leaps and bounds from then on, because of his professionalism and humane attitude; a rarity in these days.
PB stood by me thru thick and thin. He was a man with a golden heart. His departing is a personal loss to me. A tireless man on earth; may his soul rest in eternal peace.
I offer my heartfelt condolences to the bereaved family.
AB madam, I shall be a rock behind you. PB always treated me like a son.
Lots of love and prayers
Mr. Prem Behl was my second boss. A very dear one. I was very young when I joined infact our whole batch was very young. We all were like his children. That's why I named that period Golden period despite some facts. I heard the news of his departure on my anniversary day. Today when he is not among us I feel as if we lost someone very dear. May his soul rest in peace
Gulmohar Kaur Banga
Great PREM, our friend was PREMI for everyone. I have always found him loving while I have met him. He was very methodical, cooperative. I will always remember him. My condolences to the family
I know Prem Behl Ji since last 25 years. It is really shocking to hear Prem Behl Ji no more with us. I started my business in the year 2005 and he really helped and guided during initial period. I am still thankful to him for the efforts he made for me. My heartfelt condolences to family and entire team of EI Group.
Please accept my heartfelt condolences for this irreparable loss to the family. PB Sir was mentor to me for more than 19 years and I happen to learn numerous things from him. He's one of the most experienced, renowned and a knowledgeable personality in the industry. It's a big loss to the exhibition industry. May the departed soul rest in peace.
Harpal Singh (Harry)
I am deeply hurt hearing the news that our beloved PB sir has left us. He was a mentor to many but for a me, PB and AB were the role models who gave me a chance to learn from them. After spending so many years in this industry, I can proudly say that he is the best industry professional I have met till date. I still use the tips and tricks i learned from him. I am also lucky to have prepared and shared meals with him, take him on ride around Muscat and all the lovely time I have spent with him. I will truly miss him and I owe my professional career to him. Thank you PB. You will always be in our hearts.
Indrajeet Kumar, Exhibition Director, Omanexpo
I has met PB sir when he had taken my interview, what struck me was the pleasing personality which clamed my nerves. During my interactions with him what stood out for me was his passion and dedication towards the exhibition industry. He always used to encourage us to think out of the box and was always available to hear us out. He had great foresight wherein he tapped sectors that are going great guns today, be it Convergence India, Renewable Energy India Expo, Smart Cities Expo. It is a irreplaceable loss to the exhibition industry.
We have lost a dear friend, a perfect gentleman. May God grant him everlasting peace and give strength to the family to bear his loss
Kamal and Anita Meattle
My condolences to entire Behl Family. I have spent close to 9 years of my career in EI and learnt so many things from Mr. Behl. His demise is a great loss for Exhibitions Industry and I remembered once Mr. Vijay Mallya addressed him as "King of Exhibitions" .and he truly was.
Prem Uncle - A visionary, gentleman and fantastic human being. My sincere condolences to Anita Aunty, Nikhil, Dhruv and the entire Behl family.
I am enormously shocked to learn of the passing away of Prem, who was one of the nicest people I have ever had the privilege of knowing and befriending. My deep heartfelt condolences to you and family. I Pray for Peace for the kind, noble, much loved and loving soul, as well as strength to you and family to bear the irretrievable loss with Grace and dignity.
Prem and I were in Hindu College and the Hostel at the same time. He was such a fine gentleman, highly disciplined with strong idealistic principles like a true Saint.
Kuldip Singh Dhingra, Chairman, Berger Paints India Ltd
My thoughts go back to my Bachelor days with Prem, in erstwhile Madras. His laughter was the most infectious, and he was always the planner for our booze binges to Bangalore, during those dry days in Madras.
His driving skills were as bad as blind man's, as invariably misjudged distances or his mind was elsewhere, and he ended up bumping into most things that came in his way. His reactions were original- a mere 'Oops' with that infectious smile on his face, and always wondered aloud as to where the object suddenly appeared from.
Prem was fun loving, and though we lost contact post Madras days, he was always a subject of discussion that came up from time to time, when recounting the happy moments in life.
Prem you touched everyone's life you came in contact with in more than one way.
God bless you and may you RIP.
I have many memories with PB Sir but here I am sharing some of them.
I remember when I started my job in Exhibitions India Group. I am the luckiest one who worked closely with PB Sir, and over the years, our relationship developed from boss and employee to mentor. He always said to me “chal Lalit newspaper and magazine cutting karte hai” because he wanted everybody in the EI office not to miss important articles and news. Next day I would distribute the news to every department and when Sir came into the office, he would ask me did you send the news? And I said yes sir.
He was a book lover. I would order a book which he wanted and the next day when the books arrived, he would tell me the book brief, who the author is, why he wrote the book, what is the history of the book etc.
Whenever Sir and me were in office after 6 pm, with nobody else around, Sir as usual would mark news from magazines and newspapers. He would tell me, "Lalit you know AB ma'am never writes things in paper, but I write always. She remembers everything in her mind." He would talk about DB Sir and how he is so passionate about cars, and how he loves driving.
PB Sir was a great man to work for. He was always professional and pleasant, and he remembered everyone's names. I would never have grown in work without PB Sir's full support and mentorship. Thank you for being an inspiration, I am going to miss having him around to ask questions and guidance.
Your smile and you will be missed forever always.
PB sir was a mentor to me. I worked closely with him during my tenure at EI group. During my stay at EI group, I learnt a lot of things under his guidance and leadership. I always used to wonder where does he gets his strength. He was passionate about his work, still, remember his to-do notes written on small cards. As Dhruv rightly said in his video message that “He will be missed but never forgotten”. I will remember PB sir whenever I will write my to-do list on cards, or by reusing the already printed A4 sheets to save the environment. In my whole professional career, so far I have not met anyone so passionate about data quality and working so meticulously to improve it. My heartfelt condolences to AB ma’am and the entire family.
I am so sad to hear of Prem's passing. I first met Prem when I was in the International Sales Force (ISF) of Reed Exhibitions back in the '90's. Prem was a wonderful ambassador for this American girl, and all that India had to offer! I will remember Prem for his grace, kindness, vision and a smile that never stopped. My heartfelt condolences to Prem's family.
Liz Hitchcock, former work colleague in U.S.
I only met uncle a few times mostly during family functions such as weddings. But he always met us with so much affection and warmth and his towering personality would shine through the smallest of interactions. Our deepest condolences to aunty, and to Mimi and Dhruv.
Mona & Vikram
Dear Anita and the family. We are so saddened by this loss. PB used to send regular updates on the events he was organising and what was remarkable was the seeming enthusiasm he put behind each one. His ever smiling face and cheerful demeanour is how we will remember him. May his soul rest in peace and May you find the courage to bear this loss. balveerarora @yahoo.com
Marie and Balveer Arora (BA)
You're like a father for me, you and Anita were my Indian family in 2011. I've never forgot those days
I'll miss you.
I was deeply shocked after hearing the news of the sudden demise of Sh. Prem Behl.
He has been a mentor, guide, friend philosopher, and father figure to many in our Industry.
I, too, was deeply impressed by his cognizant, gentle, and people-centric approach to everything he did in and for the Indian MICE industry.
When he was alive, he mentored and left footprints for the industry colleagues to follow.
He embodied humility, simplicity and gentleness for everyone he met and made them feel important and appreciated. He was a rare blend of refined etiquettes, moral values, unparalleled knowledge, and people acumen.
I have been fortunate to have had many opportunities to meet him in person from the very first year of establishing Panache Exhibitions. Early years in the second decade of the millennium, when I was deeply engrossed in establishing my brainchild “Panache Exhibitions” as a brand in the exhibition industry, I blissfully received a call from his office with an invitation to meet him.
On meeting, he looked into my eyes and started in an exquisite Urdu, delicate words kept pouring from his mouth as if a seasoned Urdu poet is addressing a full-fledged audience.
Mr. Behl tutelary asked me ‘Why did I name my company Panache?’;
I took this opportunity to share the philosophy of naming my business.
After giving me a patient ear, he like a mentor and a friend articulated half couplet of a famous Urdu Sher with such amazing Lehja (accent):
"Razi Sahab :
Ye ishq nahiN aasaaN itna hi samajh lije
ik aag ka dariya hai aur doob ke jaana hai”.
I was awe-mouthed and humbled and felt that my mentor guardian had given me a task to achieve with.
Every time I met Behl Sahab I found him to be deeply concerned with the cause of laborer’s well-being, especially with the focus on skill development.
During my last meeting with Sh. Behl, he expressed his concerns in length and breadth for the underprivileged event workforce, especially the unskilled workforce. He shared his vision and wisdom on how we could be instrumental in upgrading their lives by providing basic needs during the setup of the events/exhibition.
For the last couple of years, his way of life was simpler and more austere, he kept me reminding me of Baba Bulley Shah.
His teachings would be inherited with us, the way that he wanted Indian Exhibition Industry to flourish with, the ideologies that he wanted the industry to practice with, eventually to make India - our loved country – to grow exponentially. Ameen!
Today I lost my ‘Father Figure’, a Bhishma Pitamah and Exhibition Stalwart in the Mahabharat of Indian MICE Industry.
Rest in Peace, Sir.
Mohd Razi Shakir
I am saddened by Mr Behl's passing away. I read about it in a newspaper. He visited me in our Embassy (Embassy of Latvia in India) last year. And after we had short correspondence. After he postponed a book presentation at his residence last year, I never heard since. He was very, very wise, with a clear and trustful vision, and extremely helpful, sincerely friendly, and humane too. Now reading the old emails I see how special he was and truly engaged and supportive with valuable informations. My deep condolences and thoughts on him and his family and friends and colleagues. With kind regards, Ms Evija
Ms Evija Rimsane
He regaled her with how he had tagged me with the nickname “Phileas Fogg for his long coat tails in the movie 'Around the World in 80’days 'My coat lengths must have been longer thanks to the parents instructions to the tailor to plan for growth.
Last met Prem at Medanta where we were to see Dr Kasliwal
Always with an infectious and mischievous smile on his face
Another college friend Billy Shrikent who worked with EI after retirement from Reckit & Colman spoke very highly of Prem
Sadly we lost Billy few months back.
Sad that Prem left the mortal world so Young. Makes me think my time may come any days. Strength to his legacy and his loved ones
Narbirinder Singh Loomba
Condolences to his family from some one who was in class with him at La Martiniere College Lucknow
We all are so much hurt that Sir left us all. He was a fighter and encouraged all of us to achieve excellently. My condolences to family for their loss. Due to sir's health issues, I was not able to meet him in his last days. May his soul rest in peace.
I remember every meeting with PB Sir, lovely family and best professional. All I can relate my story with "Life of Pi", I moved from chennai to delhi, end up meeting a powerful tiger. I had the privilege of learning every knack of doing business from him for 7 hrs. Days in Lal wala Building, Okhla,Home food at Defence Colony, our drive in chennai roads, joint meetings, Fights and love. Rewards, Unlimited advise & Passion to support the industry growth. Today, I stand in the market as a Tree, seeded by you. My love & prayers to entire family. AB Ma'am, We all love you... Ur Julie Baby
PB's Julie Baby
Some special memories
Attending a cocktail party that Prem organized and hosted at his home attended by diplomats, court justices, politicians, among others. Prem seamlessly transitioned between professional associate, friend and mentor engaging everyone there.
Weekend brunch at the club—what impressed me the most was that Prem knew everyone—yes everyone—the members, their guests, the staff, everyone and engaged just about everyone. I was in disbelief, but Nikhil confirmed that this was the norm
Prem shared with me that he had bought a satellite. My first reaction was—what the heck are you doing with a satellite. Of course, after thinking about it for 30 seconds I thought to myself—of course you own a satellite. It was naturally one of the many endeavors that drove him.
We never progressed far into a conversation before Prem would ask about the wellbeing of my family.
These memories and others will stay with me and as such will keep the spirit of Prem alive.
I can only describe Prem as a total gentleman. He has been a great interface with the international broadcast community. His thoughtfulnessl, kind-heartedness and passion are virtues that we must all learn from. An amazing achiever and someone who would persuade you without you even knowing it. An amazing achievement to have got 100,000's of people together for the various events, from within India and globally. He will be missed, however his legacy will continue from the firm foundations that he has laid. RIP
Our hearts are saddened by your loss and our thoughts and prayers are with you.
I met Prem just a couple of time many years ago., He did leave a lasting memory of his blissful aura. May the lord give him space in his own abode.
I got to know him just before I retired, He was always interested in going towards the maximum utilisation of his exhibitions - seminars, lectures, brainstorms, discussions, publications alongwith exhibitions. Gradually I found we had many common friends, and he was always full of new ideas, and wanting to help..
He was truly remarkable and different, and we will all miss him. Our condolensces are with the family. They will miss him the most. He lived fast, and went away in a similar mode. ,
PB Sir the most inspiring leader I have ever come across. I remember when I started my job at EIG and PB sir was the first person to welcome me. I was fortunate to have worked under his leadership for over 15 years and could recall the warmth and affection bestowed upon me. He taught me so much in those early days that I will never forget in my lifetime.
A true charismatic personality who groomed me to become a better human being both professionally and personally. An inspirational soul to the young generation, a true leader and a great mentor, a man of integrity, a true gentleman, and a respectful, caring human being. He has always been somebody whom we would look up to for advice, the gentle smile on his face and the spark in his eyes will be profoundly missed every day. I'm going to miss having him around to ask questions and get guidance.
Now that he’s left us to a better place, may his noble soul rest in peace. Your presence will be greatly missed sir!
Prem was a dear friend. I had known him for over 30 years and had many professional and business interaction during my tenure in Essar, Motorola and Oxigen. Have had the privilege to share many meals with him at his /our house. The last time he met me on his way from Himachal, he brought some wines which we shared and and enjoyed overtime. He was a loving, caring and compassionate person. It’s. a great personal loss to me. I offer my deepest condolences to his wife and son and other family members and pray to God Almighty to grant him moksh & eternal peace.
I condole the sad demise of Prem Behl ji. He was true legend in the industry and as a person. My thoughts with his family and Exhibitions India team.
I joined EI in 2010 in Bangalore and met him multiple times. The first time I met him during my induction and first thing stuck me , he was so humble and approachable. I always felt his thinking was ahead of its time and which made him a visionary.
I still remember we use to get email from him on a daily basis marking important news from the industry across all news paper daily. He was a knowledge power house. It is end of an era. My prayers are with AB maam and the family.
A wonderful person ever to have been associated with...
We used to carried out all his airconditioning works way back,from 1990 to 2000 when we shifted to Gurgaon. A thorough gentleman,It was always a pleasure to deal with him and discuss his requirements and AC problems.
I have always remembered him and continue to remember him for years to come. My deepest and heartfelt condolence to his family.
When we meet certain people, we try to hold onto them for life. Yet what do we do when they are taken from us? We go on without them, our worlds a little darker, but our lives enriched. When a light goes off in this world, it turns on in another. Although to most he may have appeared to ‘just’ be my boss but he was so much more to me.
Mentor, friend, like my Father. His intelligence and perfectionism stunned us all, and although he believed in me, I partly felt like there had been some mistake. I was an imposter in his shadow of brilliance. My grief at his loss is thick and confounding.
Thank you! PB for your grace, your patience and the memory of your smile. Wishing you peace and courage and loving memories to forever hold in your heart.
Mr. Prem Behl is one of the nicest person i have met in my life. He was visionary and very humble man with great ideas and had been always very encouraging for my ideas. I had the honor to meet him on a number of occasions, and as invited speaker in his great initiatives of Smart City Expo every year in past. He also invited me and my family to his home for lunch, that was great gesture of him. Myself, Ar. Rajendra Kumar and wife Dr. Trupti Katira Kumar express our condolences and also pray to God to give strength to his family to bear this shock. Mr. Prem Behl's demise is a loss to the professional fraternity.
Rajendra Kumar, Architect
There are no goodbyes because we don’t die, we transform..so see you forever. See you in the next dimension when our souls are free.
The day I learnt about his tragic demise, I suddenly became too sad to react. Despite knowing that he had acquired a terrible disease, but my heart was not in a mood to accept that news.
He lived his life Kingsize and will always remain a beacon of light in my and many others' lives. His unlimited advise on every aspect of my association is my best asset till day. For sure he will be missed, but will NEVER be forgotten by anyone of us who has ever worked under his umbrella.
My wishes to entire family and I pray Almighty to give them enough courage to sail through these difficult times.
Lost my mentor, lost my guide.........In prayers and thoughts he will stay forever !!
I joined Exhibitions India in 1997 as CFO when it was a proprietorship firm being run from a basement office in Defence Colony. The one thing PB asked me during the interview that can you convert this into a company as his consultants had tried three times before that but did not succeed in getting the name Exhibitions India Pvt Ltd from Registrar office. I promised him, 'I will'. I fullfilled my promise within 9 months of my joining and there was no looking back from there........Few years later, I proposed to him to organise an event on banking technology and he said you do it. I said, I am a finance person, how can I sell an event. He was confident .... and 'bank.net' took off.
I had become part of the family...... I wanted a loan as I was planning to buy my first house....he said you draft the agreement, you write the amount you want and you decide the mode of repayment and interest. Such was the confidence and belonging he shared not only with me but with all his team members.
Whenever there was time for annual increments, he would say- Rajnesh you decide your increment and let me know. He believed in his people.
It was a tough decision for me to leave the ''family'' after 9 long years of working together but I moved on, on my career path.
I remember PB as one of the most hard working person I have seen in my life. Whatever he dreamt, he achieved it with his passion, hard work & sincerity.
You will be missed PB but never forgotten !
It’s so sudden & shocking to me that Sri Prem Behl is no more. I came into contact with him only 3 years back. He was a lively personality. May God rest his soul in peace.
As I write these few words, many memories of Prem are flashing through the mind.
PB to many but always Prem to me, he endeared himself to all within a few weeks of joining USHA in mid seventies, when our paths crossed as colleagues. He moved on to International Wool Secretariat, Mumbai and I remember visiting him there. I recall his visit to my office at Inalsa, Delhi when he decided to set up EI and dropped in to share his plans.
Always seeking new challenges, always raising the bar higher and higher, Prem was a highly competent professional and above all a thorough gentleman. From INTEX, I had the opportunity to participate in many EI shows and the privilege of being invited by him to speak at different forums. Each show was better than the ones gone by.
One felt extremely proud to see him earn so much respect and support from the top echelons of GOI’s political and bureaucratic leadership and from many Govts. overseas.
For some years, he spared time to work with us as an Independent Director on INTEX Board and made invaluable contributions.
Prem, you have left behind in EI a pioneer in Exhibitions - a home grown, world class enterprise which you built with so much love, sweat and passion. I am sure your family and colleagues will ensure that it continues to grow from strength to strength and realises all your dreams.
Rest in peace, dear friend! God bless Anita, the boys and their families.
Ramesh A. Vaswani
The OSA Hindu College is saddened to learn about the sad demise of its Eminent Alumnus Prem Behl and offers its heartfelt condolences to his family. Om Shanti
Ravi Burman, President, OSA Hindu College
He's been one of the toughest yet most inspiring leaders to work with, who taught me life skills beyond the usual work regime. I can never forget his story telling & wow business meetings. I always loved & adored his Charisma. I only wish that if I could have met him a little earlier in life & spent more time under his supervision. Now, he shall Cherish the world up there #Amen #RIP #Behl Sahab #aTrueGuru #Om Shanti.
Prem and I go back thirty-five years when , coincidentally , we started our businesses at the same time . 35 years is a long time !
We never saw each other as business associates - we were friends and brothers from day one till I spoke to him just a few days ago .
Remember him with a smile because this is how he’d want it .
Anita, to you and your entire family, we send our heartfelt condolences. We do understand the pain and sorrow you are all going through. It is always difficult to come to terms with the passing away of a dear one, more so when it is a loving husband, a wonderful father and a doting grandfather. Though we knew Prem, at this point feel not enough. We did have occasions to meet and he always greeted us with an affectionate smile - a happy one at that - and a twinkle in his eye. Prem came across as a grand personality having an air of cheer and positivity about him. Greeting everyone with warmth, he had a kind word for all.
At this time, we pray to the ALMIGHTY to bless his kind soul with eternal peace, and give strength to you, Anita, and yours to bear this irreparable loss.
Renu & Lalit (Mehra)
One of the great person I have ever come across in my life. Most certainly the great boss I worked with. His compassionate nature had me floored. We will miss you Sir. I will always keep you in my heart. May your soul rest in peace.
PB was the only always smart and well-dressed erudite Behl in my family that I could take anywhere in HK or SG, and he'd charm the pants off anybody we met, with his wit and experience in travel worldwide.
His 'seniors' then were the late Laroia brothers from Babur lane. In Sikhism this tradition is practiced even today, and we should appreciate our 'senior sailors' for course they set up for our lives. Their navigation in rougher seas was more creditworthy than our generation who think much more before we 'tack'.
In life we always seek humans to model ourselves on and after every setback on the current 'tack' of life, once recovered from the Manoeuvre, and sails set up pulling the boat ahead we seek to learn from and emulate those 'senior' sailors. Prem B was one such man for me. Who went from corporate life to own business and scaled up EI successfully.
In Dec. 2012, after a road-trip across Rajasthan with my wife, PB arranged a dinner at E-6 for the Behl “Bahu” from America, which was more elaborate than both the shaadi’s we’d had.
Was very fond of him and identified with him. He's shaped me in some way. So many Delhi trips staying with him at E-6 Defence Colony, and when he used to visit us in Bombay. PB was the first Behl with my Dad to see the Alibag land where my parents live now. PB met our Neel in SG couple of days after his birth, even before my parents did in July 2016. He had a white fiat 124 from the wool secretariat office and lived at the Royal Bombay Yacht Club in the 80’s for years. PB had a very good way to speak with customers and bureaucrats. Lots to learn from his positive points.
Sad that God does Cancer to good people, and then COVID hastened the demise. Will miss you PB - always looked forward to meeting you: in HK, in SG & now someday in Heaven.
Prem and I first met in his room in Hindu College Hostel in 1962 along with Randhir. I was being ragged since I had moved in to the hostel later than him, so I was a Junior.. He asked me to sing to save myself further torture. I belted out an Elvis number and wow! that did the trick. That's what ragging is all about. And that's how our friendship blossomed.
Over the past fifty eight years we kept in touch; In Bombay when I worked for the Music Industry and he was in IWS. Then after many years, I bumped into Prem at an exhibition in Amsterdam followed by his visit to Dubai where I was working for Sony. The last meeting was at a wedding in Delhi but he was still clean shaven.
I was therefore surprised and saddened when I saw his picture this morning. I recognized him from the glint in his eyes which hadn't changed since college days. Prem smiled with his eyes.
Keep smiling my friend. Though you have said good bye to us I will say ' Au Revoir' my friend. Rest In Peace.
It is so disheartening that we have lost such a beautiful soul. PB Sir will always live in our hearts with his sweet memories. His wonderful mannerism and gentle nature can never be erased from our hearts.
I had the wonderful opportunity to work with him for almost 14 years. Traveled with him to many countries and learnt many things from him (which can’t be expressed in one sentence).
His quality of being an avid reader and sharing all the knowledge with his employees is incomparable. He loved to meet people all the time. During one of our overseas trips, I had fixed many meetings- starting from breakfast to dinner back-to-back every day, and I found him to be even more energetic after finishing every meeting.
We will miss his energy and passion that he brought to work with him every day.
I met late Sh. Prem Behl after my return from USA in 2008. He was such a gentle man and noble soul. He took time out to meet me and explain about Telecom Industry in India. He also introduced me to his executives to share relevant information with me.
Later I was always welcome to his exhibitions, especially Convergence India. Due to his benevolence towards students, he asked his staff to make exhibition and conference free to my 120 MBA students.
We shall always remember him as a benevolent, helping and noble soul who worked tirelessly for the staff and industry.
Great loss of a man with a vision and a mission! Rest in peace PB - You and your high values are most fondly remembered and cherished by all of us. Thank you for pioneering the Indian exhibition industry and for your invaluable contribution in giving trade and commerce industry impetus over 2 decades. It's a personal loss to many of us whom you have incubated as intrapreneurs and entrepreneurs. Our heartfelt condolences to all in the family.
Prem Behl sir was an inspiration to us younger generation. He had his unique ways of dealing with people and alternatively injecting them with aspirations. He was a perfect blend of strong and gentle. May he continue to be our guiding light and his soul rest in peace......
My first memory of Prem was in Soccer kit (or was it Hockey) returning from a match at Calcutta's famed Maidan where numerous sports clubs flourished. This would be around 1965/66. My memory is of a young person with the looks of a movie star, a disarming smile and charming manners. Then we learned that Anita, who I knew through Ritu my wife, and Prem were seeing each other. This is to recall our. youth as we go a long way back..
All the other memories I see above bear witness to a fine person , a great guy to work with, a friend, a karmayogi. What more can one ask for when he leaves this world? Anita, we grieve with you for your loss and he will always be remembered fondly by us.
The exhibition Industry lost its veteran who brought sense of quality to the industry and I lost a friend and a mentor. He will always be remembered for his enormous contribution to the industry.
May our condolences and prayers give the family the strength to bear this immense loss.
May his soul rest in peace.
The untimely demise of a leader of such stature has left the exhibitions industry stunned. The void thus created by providence shall forever stay unfilled. May the Almighty grant strength to his family members to cope with such a tragedy and peace to the departed soul
Rest in peace PB Sir !
He was my Boss as Marketing Manager in Usha Sales Ltd. in the year 1978. A lean and thin but a smiling-smart young man; I never saw him angry. Very considerate- I remember Mr. Behl accompanied staff members of his Division to walled City of Delhi where one of the staff members who lost his infant son and there he consoled him passionately. I resigned from Usha Sales in the year 1979 to join a Bank. In a summary farewell he wished me good-luck. I have not met or even seen him since February, 1979. But today when I saw an obituary reference with his photograph, in the newspaper I wondered if this is the same smart and smiling Mr. Prem Behl who I saw last in the month of February, 1979. The Internet site confirmed it. I worked under him for about a year but even such a short period has left an impression on me. I wish, and am sure, his soul now rests in peace in heaven. My condolences to the family members of the departed soul.
Deeply saddened by the news of PB Sir's passing away. I was one of the thousands of people that he influenced, by giving me my first break and mentoring me. The values, virtues, morals and ethics which got instilled into me merely by working with him have held me in good stead all along my career. I feel so lucky to have had the chance to work under him and his energy, enthusiasm, zeal for life, and an incessant craving of delivering good work will always be the markers for my life ahead. May his soul rest in peace.
My prayers and most heartfelt sympathy are with the family.
It is distressing to hear about the untimely passing away of Prem whom I have known well over many years and of course we were associated in USHA for a number of years.
Not that we met too often these days but I have always been refreshed each time I met him owing to his sweet, endearing and open-hearted smile and affectionate greetings. Even with his magisterial beard his warmth shone through.
I wonder what happened for him to depart so early? Was it Covid?
We are the same age and one has now started looking at obituary columns and observed the passing away of some friends and associates. Your family and ours have also been associated for long as you know. Those links, rendered tenuous by time, still tug at good memories.
I know this is a troublesome time for you and the family. Please do accept my and my family’s condolences on this sad occasion and I do hope that the passage of time will soon assuage the loss that you and the family must feel.
It may seem a cliche to say that there are but a few you may meet fleetingly, who still leave a lasting impression on you. Be it for their wit, their charm, their intelligence, their curiosity, their affection, their zeal, their appeal, their generosity, and their genuine warmth. It is rare though to find one person do all of that. I wish I had known him better, but in the few times I met him, I always carried an image of a special man, a man of integrity, a true gentleman, and a respectful, caring human being. I know Dhruv embodies so much of him, and all I can say is it has been my privilege to know the Behl family. And I am sure wherever he may be now, PB as I see him being affectionately referred to - would be busy setting things up - to make things better, more efficient and just a whole lot nicer. Until we meet again sir, much love and respect.
Siddharth Vinayak Patankar
I knew Prem from the very first Exhibitions India Convergence; and attended his show every year without fail. I was a fixture at the show.
I enjoyed the show evey time, and it was always a pleasure to meet Prem, Anita, Dhruv and Chandrika. They are like family to me. God bless the BEHL family.
My first boss in Usha in 1975, I was fresh from college , a trainee and he was Sales Manager. A live wire who taught the company how to sell sewing machines on the shop floor. His Greet, Seat and Sell approach probably is still the mantra being followed. But on a lighter note, it was great fun working with him.
Many times we shared our lunch. He was a misfit in the Usha culture which was quite regimented.Anyways two instances I haven’t forgotten were when he just took away the huge bundle of papers on my table and threw them away saying if you haven’t seen them for a week you won’t need them anyway. I still follow this rule.
The second was when the personnel department sent a huge bunch of biodatas for screening. He simply put them on a table under the fan running at full speed. The ones which fell down were rejected and the left over sent to personnel deptt for processing. So it was always fun.
I do recollect meeting Anitaji, and Nikhil was probably a toddler. Mr Behl left Usha soon and I continued. We met quite many years letter with the same hug and brilliant smile. He was a very handsome man. We were aware of each other’s progress but didn’t keep in touch. It’s sad he has left too soon. My deepest condolences to Anitaji and family. May his soul rest in peace.
I still can't believe this news. He was a towering presence among all of us. For everyone he was a mentor, guru, boss, family, superior, colleague, guide and so on, but for me, he will always remain my father figure.
Coming into North India for the first time, meeting him in Def Col and taking me under his wings... chiding me always to make me worthy enough (knowing well that I was AB Ma'am's favourite), teaching me nuances of business even going to extent of telling me how to have table manners in North India- there was never a day which passed by without him watching me over. And when he knew I was ready, he gave me the required freedom to do things and excel in what I do.
Those 6 years of my professional life where I worked directly under him and ma'am, made me who I am today. He is one of the best professional this world has seen in recent times and even more better human being and he will continue to live in everything I do.
Rest in peace Sir... Maybe God decided that you finally need to take some Rest! Your legacy will live for years to come!
Heartfelt condolences to Ma'am, Nikhil and Dhruv. and the entire family!
Sundaresan Venkatraman (PB sir's Venki)
My association with Prem was for over 15 years with my participation in his Fintech conferences and all these years, I could only see an ever smiling beaming warm person who is on a constant lookout to showcase India. Rarely I have seen a person with such passion in exhibition industry. RIP
I am shocked to learn regarding the sad and sudden demise of Prem.Having been through the same challenging times, I know well what you would be going through.
Beyond the inconsolable grief that goes with the physical separation from dearly loved ones, rest assured that your souls remain united through prayers. In my understanding death is only physical, while the soul remains eternal.
I met him close to 14 years ago when I joined EIG, and as these years passed by, I got the great opportunity to work with him in close quarters. I learnt so much from him as I look back on myself & what I am now. In the course of working with him, I lost a lot of my hair, but gained exponential amount of knowledge!
The kind of zeal, enthusiasm, passion he had, I have never seen in my life. He was an ocean of knowledge, and if you asked him anything, you would have an instant answer!
The void left by him cannot be ever filled but it is upon us now to preserve his fondest memories and carry his legacy forward. Words cannot express my sadness. Rest in Peace Sir, and yes, you will be missed but never forgotten.
Prem was my marketing guru. He was a visionary and EI was part of a huge creative vision. He had a rare talent and determination. He will be greatly missed.
SHRADHANJALI For Our Dear Friend Prem
His Memory will remain Everlasting and Evergreen in Our Mind !
Ritu and I enjoyed Our Close Association with Prem right from 1992 onwards and have had the record of Attending His Global Industry Events Year on Year without Fail through each of the Years from 1994 onwards.
Our Closeness with Prem goes far beyond Events and Get Togethers due to His Genuine Interest in People and their Welfare as also His Helpful Attitude.!
He was a Very Popular Leader and Yet Firm and Clear in His Objectives.
At the same time He was a Man of diverse interests and Our interactions were always Very Stimulating and Thought provoking !
Though God Has taken Him away Very Early from Us , His Memories will have left their permanent Imprint in Our Minds.
Our Deepest Sympathies are with You, Anita and the Family Members, and rest Assured of We being with You Always.
May Prem's Soul Rest in Peace and God Grant You the strength to bear this irreplaceable loss .
Umang and Ritu
Umang and Ritu Das
He perfected role of mentor. Always ready to teach and learn, I will never forget his candidness while asking me for any help and showing big gratitude. I respect him with all my heart. R.I.P PB
Distant by age and authority yet close enough to give friendly and fatherly wibes, PB Sir was a wonderful man to emulate and learn a lot of big and small things in life. He knew the art of living and a keen observer of his actions and words could learn it equally. Even though I had luck to work with him for a shorter period of time but what I learnt from him will remain with me lifelong.
Will miss you sir.
Vijay Vardhan Singh
We were very sorry indeed to hear the sad news of Prem’s passing away, with so much left to do.One will always remember his vivacious and gentle personality.Both of us pray that may his soul rest in peace and God give Anita and the family strength to bear this irreparable loss.
Vijaya and Vishwanath Anand
I met Mr. Behl in Amritsar for the first time in 1984 and thereafter had the opportunity to work under his guidance for a short time and always stayed in touch for years. He was a sincere senior, advisor, friend and human being for me in all fields of life.
It is a personal loss for me, my deepest condolences to Mrs, Anita Behl and family. May his soul rest in peace.
I had the honour of knowing Prem Behl for a lifetime and continuously since 1988 through the OMA Delhi Chapter. He was always a inspiration in good behaviour. His ready smile, encouraging attitude and positive outlook were a great support to all his friends & acquaintance. His open-hearted approach to anyone in difficulties and his large-hearted parties at his home will always be remembered by all Martinians. May the Almighty God grant peace to him and May the Almighty God bless his family with strength to endure this irreplaceable tragic loss.
Yogesh Sharma 'Old Martinian'
I met PB in 2004 when I joined the Exhibitions India Group. The first thing that struck me about him was his charming and affable demeanor… he made everybody feel at ease instantly. He was principled, and valued integrity above all else. He was a true leader in every sense of the word.
In the years that I spent at EIG, there were so many things I learnt from him on a daily basis. He was always punctual, meticulous about his work and very ethical. Always keen to learn new things, PB would search for newsletters on various subjects and forward them each morning to all the relevant Group Heads. His in-depth knowledge of each subject was always evident in each meeting we went for together. I will forever cherish all that I have learnt from him.
In a lifetime, you come across very few people who truly leave a mark on your mind and heart, and PB was one such person. His passing is a great loss for the Exhibitions Industry, and a personal loss for me.
May God give strength to AB, Dhruv, Chandrika and the family.
Yogita Taneja Kackar
Yogita Taneja Kackar