P A Balan Master, 74, Chairman, Kerala Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation Ltd (KCMMF) passed away on Saturday morning at Thrissur.
Balan Master was undergoing treatment for cerebral haemorrhage at a private hospital for the past one month.
A native of Avinissery in Thrissur District, Balan Master is survived by wife Vasanthi Devi (retired from KSFE), son Ranjith Balan (IT entrepreneur and former director board member of Technopark) and daughter Reshmi Shaji. Shaji Balakrishnan (Dubai) and Manju Ranjith (System Analyst, UST Global) are his son-in-law and daughter-in-law respectively. Lakshmi, Gokul and Nived are grand children. Cremation will take place at his residence at Avinissery near Ollur, in Thrissur at 5 pm today.
A founding leader of Milma, Balan Master had been active in Kerala’s Co-operative sector for over four decades. He has served on the director board of KCMMF and its Regional unions for the past 30 years. He was elected as the Chairman of KCMMF on January 22, 2019 for a period of 5 years.
Vice President of Kerala Karshaka Congress, he also served as Chairman, Ernakulam Regional Union for two terms. A teacher by profession, he was the State Vice President of All Kerala Ezhuthachan Samajam.
Balan Master had played a lead role in the growth of Milma as a dairy major of the country, having a network of over 3000 primary co-operatives across the state with a million dairy farmers affiliated to them.
His dedication and vision had contributed substantially in turning Milma into one of Kerala’s largest co-operative institutions with a turnover of Rs 3000 crore.
His experience, empathy and managerial skills came in handy to steering Milma through the grim challenges faced by the diary sector following the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.
He was popular in the dairy sector being the President of Milk Societies Association and a Member of State Cooperative Union. Before formation of Milma, he was active in the sector as Director of Thrissur District Milk Supply Union.
Balan Master was recipient of several honours including the Leading Milk Entrepreneur Award instituted by Indian Economic and Research Association in 2013 and the Best Co-operator award in 2008.
Chairman of Regional Co-operative Milk Producers Unions, management and employees of Milma and its distributors and agents across the state expressed profound grief at the demise of Balan Master.
Milma Malabar Regional Union Chairman K S Mani, Ernakulam Regional Union Chairman, John Theruvath and Thiruvananthapuram Regional Union Administrative Committee Convener N Bhasurangan & Dr. Patil Suyog Subhash Rao, Managing Director, KCMMF expressed deep sorrow at the passing away of Balan Master.