Although one in four of all adult Indians use tobacco, the country’s addiction runs far deeper. The government, too, has a toxic dependence. It’s called ITC Ltd.
Formerly known as Imperial Tobacco of India, later renamed India Tobacco Company, and finally truncated to just ITC, the 110-year-old conglomerate is 29.4% owned by British American Tobacco Plc. About 28.5% is controlled by various Indian state-run insurance companies and a government-controlled bad bank.