Dattatray Phuge, who was known as "gold man" after he was photographed in a shirt, made in pure gold a few years ago, was allegedly beaten to death in front of his son , at Dighi near Pune.
The Pune businessman was famous for possessing a golden shirt worth Rs 1.2 crore. He was a chit-fund businessman and an aspiring politician. The 48-year-old was found dead at a large ground early on Friday morning.
Phuge was reportedly attacked by a dozen men. His son told the police that Phuge was dragged out of his car and they struck him with a sickle. Later they pounded him to death with huge stones before running away.
His 22-year-old son was spared by the attackers. Police say that both Phuge and his son were invited by one of the suspects for a birthday celebration. Police suspect a financial dispute and have detained four persons.
Four years ago, the high-profile businessman made a memorable picture 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.
He was a member of Sharad Pawar's Nationalist Congress Party. Phuge had a money-lending and chit fund business and over the recent months, he had been accused of financial misappropriation.