New Delhi: Business tycoon Anand Mahindra late Tuesday evening tweeted to express his anguish over the disappearance of Cafe Coffee Day founder VG Siddhartha, whose body was then found washed ashore the Netravathi river at 6:30 am in Mangaluru on Wednesday.
Chairman Mahindra Group, Anand Mahindra wrote, “I did not know him & have no knowledge of his financial circumstances. I only know that entrepreneurs must not allow business failure to destroy their self-esteem. That will bring about the death of entrepreneurship.”
“Two fishermen found Siddhartha’s body early this morning about 500 metres away from the road bridge from where he alleged to have jumped into the river on Monday night, a Mangaluru Police Commissioner Sandeep Patil told reporters. The port city of Mangaluru is about 360km west of Bengaluru.
The body was found by the fishermen near Hoige Bazar in trousers but without a shirt.
“The body has been shifted to the state-run Wenlock hospital mortuary here for autopsy. It will be handed over to Siddhartha’s family and taken to Chikkamgaluru for the last rites,” Ullal Congress legislator and former minister U.T. Khadar said.
“It was identified to be Siddhartha’s with a gold ring on his right-hand finger, a digital watch on his left hand and shoes he was wearing when he appears to have jumped off the road bridge,” he added.
On Tuesday, a fisherman had claimed to have seen a man jumping into the Netravathi river from the same bridge, almost 24 hours after his driver raised an alarm about the missing businessman.
Two days prior to his disappearance, the coffee baron had left behind a note to his employees that revealed he was in deep debt.
The mountain of debt was impairing his business as working capital requirements could not be met. It led him to sale his stakes in IT firm Mindtree that gave him some room to manoeuvre.
Siddhartha left Bengaluru on Monday afternoon to Sakleshpur near Hassan where he has a house and one of his coffee estates. As it was on way to Mangaluru, he told Patil to drive towards Mangaluru after a short break at Sakleshpur to fresh-up.
Siddhartha is the elder son-in-law of senior BJP leader, S.M. Krishna, who was External Affairs Minister in the UPA-2 government (2009-12) and state Chief Minister (1999-2004) when in the Congress.
With IANS inputs