Ehsanollah 'Ehsan' Bayat (Persian: احسان الله بیات, born July 15, 1963) is an Afghan American business entrepreneur residing in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, USA. He is originally from Ghazni. He is an ethnic Turkmen from the Bayat tribe, and his family belongs to the Qizilbash community of Afghanistan. In 1979 he moved to the United States and obtained a bachelor's degree in engineering from the New Jersey Institute of Technology. After the fall of the Taliban regime, he came to Afghanistan and founded Afghan Wireless Communication Company and Bayat Foundation, the latter of which played a crucial role on opening the Ariana Television Network, that has large audiences not only in Afghanistan but also among Afghan refugees in Pakistan.
Bayat founded Telephone Systems International (TSI). Together withthe Afghan Ministry of Communications, TSI currently owns and operates the first and largest mobile phone company in Afghanistan, Afghan Wireless. Bayat also founded the Ariana Radio and Television Networks, which broadcast to large audiences in Afghanistan and across the world via Satellite.
In addition to establishing communications companies, Ehsan Bayat has contributed to the development of Afghanistan through the Bayat Foundation. Founded in 2006, the Bayat Foundation strives to improve living conditions for people across Afghanistan by providing food, clothing, orphan care, entrepreneurship programs and athletics. For his efforts, Bayat has receivednumerous awards, including the Mahatma Gandhi Humanitarian Award, Businessmanof the Year from the Afghan-American Chamber of Commerce, 2016 NJIT Alumni Achievement Award and the Human RightsNational Award from the Afghanistan Human Rights Association.
In January 2009, an article by Ahmad Majidyar of the American Enterprise Institute included Bayat on a list of fifteen possible candidates in the 2009 Afghan presidential election. He is one of the richest persons of Afghan origin and is unofficially regarded to be a billionaire.
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- Ahmad Majidyar (January 2009). "Afghanistan's Presidential Election" (PDF). American Enterprise Institute. Archived from the original on 2009-09-18.
With a bachelor of science in engineering technology from the New Jersey Institute of Technology, Bayat is the founder of Wireless Communication Company, the Bayat Foundation, and Ariana Television Network in Afghanistan. An ethnic Turkmen from Kabul, the business tycoon is popular for his charitable work throughout the country. He is rumored to challenge Karzai in the coming vote. However, Bayat lacks popularity among Pashtuns.