Gurdeep Singh Chadha, chairman and managing director of Indian conglomerate Wave, has been allegedly killed by his brother Hardeep over a dispute about the family business.
Chadha, also known as Ponty, was reportedly shot in the chest by his younger brother, who was also killed in the ensuing gunfight.
The feud between the brothers started last year when their father, Kulwant, died without dividing the family firm among his sons. The Chada empire, which has revenues of around 25 billion Indian rupees (€355 million), includes real estate, sugar production, film distribution and paper mills.
Ponty, 55, was also well known for obtaining a monopoly over the sale of liquor in Uttar Pradesh, home to around 200 million people, from the state’s government.
According to media reports, the shooting was a result of a dispute over ownership of the family’s luxury farmhouse, located outside of New Delhi. Ponty reportedly went to the farmhouse to seize the property, but an argument with Hardeep led to the younger brother shooting Ponty.
Hardeep, who served as executive director at Wave, was in turn shot by one of the guards who had accompanied Ponty.
Set up in 1952 as the Chadha Group, the business was later renamed Wave and rapidly expanded under second-gen Ponty’s leadership. It is said he had very good connections with political leaders, which reportedly played a role in the company’s growth. A third brother Rajinder, who was uninvolved in the dispute between Ponty and Hardeep, serves as managing director at Wave.
It is not known who will succeed Ponty as the head of the business, but speculation is rife that son Manpreet, currently joint managing director, was being groomed as his successor.