Pune's 'Gold Man' Datta Phuge Beaten To Death In Front Of Son
Friday, 15 July 2016 - 15:19
Datta Phuge, the Pune businessman who came to be known as the "gold man" after he was photographed in a pure gold shirt a few years ago, was allegedly beaten to death in front of his son late last night.
Mr Phuge, 48, was reportedly attacked by a dozen men who dragged him out of his car, struck him with a sickle and pounded him to death with huge stones before running away.
His 22-year-old son, who was also present, was spared by the attackers.
The police say Mr Phuge and his son were invited by one of the suspects for a birthday celebration.
A financial dispute is suspected to be the motive. Four persons have been detained. Some reports said his nephew is among them.
Four years ago, the high-profile businessman made a memorable image in a 22-carat gold shirt worth over Rs. one crore, with Swarovski crystal buttons and a matching gold belt. It was billed as the world's most expensive shirt and designed to catch the eye easily.
The 3.5 kg shirt, crafted by 15 workmen from Bengal according to legend, did get him noticed.
Mr Phuge, a member of Sharad Pawar's Nationalist Congress Party, grabbed prime time space on many Marathi television channels.
The husband of a former civic corporator, Mr Phuge had a money-lending and chit fund business. Over the recent months, he had been accused of financial bungling.