Billionaire business tycoon Cyrus Mistry, a descendant of the Shapoorji Pallonji Group and former Chairman of the Tata Sons, and a close family friend died in a traffic accident in Maharashtra’s Palghar district on Sunday.
Besides Mistry, another victim was Jahangir Pandole whose family is one of the founders of the Duke beverage brand.
Mistry and Pandole died on the spot, according to eyewitnesses.
Other occupants of the car were Jahangir’s brother Darius Pandole, MD and CEO of JM Financial Asset Management Ltd and his wife Anahita Pandole, a gynecologist at Breach Candy Hospital and a fertility expert.
The accident happened at around 3.30pm when they were traveling in a Mercedes and hit a barrier along the stretch of the Surya river on the Mumbai-Ahmedabad Highway – about 100km from Mumbai.
“Four people were in the car, of whom two died on the spot and two people were rushed to hospital,” said Inspector of Police Palghar Balasaheb Patil. “An examination of the panchnama has been carried out,” he said, adding that he would be able to comment only after the postmortem report.
Palghar Police have registered a report of accidental death and an investigation is ongoing.
Reports say it was a case of overspeeding, but an official version from the police is awaited.
Asked about the cause, he said: “Our team of experts and the people from the RTO are at work … only after that can we comment on anything or elaborate on the reason.”
Anahita Pandole was on wheels when the accident occurred and the victims were in the back seat. Airbags had also appeared but the accident was devastating.
Mistry and Pandole’s bodies have been taken to the sub-district hospital in Kasa, while the Pandole couple have been transferred to Pelangi Hospital in Vapi in Gujarat, where they are undergoing treatment.
The body will be taken to Sir JJ Hospital in Mumbai for post-mortem, after which it will be handed over to the family.
Mistrys and Pandoles are family friends.
The Pandole brothers lost their father Dinshaw Pandole, last week.
They had gone to Udvada in Valsad district over the weekend where they visited Iranshah Atash Behram fire temple for post-funeral ceremonies. The incident happened on the way home.
The Maharashtra government has ordered an investigation into the incident and requested a detailed report from the Palghar police.
Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, who holds the Home portfolio, spoke with Police Director General Rajnish Seth and asked for a detailed investigation. “It was an unfortunate accident in Palghar, I spoke to DGP and instructed for a detailed investigation,” he said.