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Sahara pledges boss parade

New Delhi, June 6: Will he or won’t he'

Sahara India has promised to parade Subrata Roy before television cameras to answer some of the most intriguing questions of recent times: does he have a life-threatening disease, is he being held captive or is he just taking rest'

“He will appear in public life in the next two days,” said a Sahara India spokesperson.

Roy, referred to as Saharashri in his business empire, has not been seen for nearly three months since an appearance at a function to mark his father’s birth anniversary.

Sahara had sought to quell the rumours by saying that high blood pressure and some “reversible mild disorders” were keeping him away from the public eye.

But a Lucknow college teacher claiming to be Roy’s “well-wisher” kept the pot boiling by filing a petition in a court alleging that his wife was holding him hostage. The case was thrown out but the speculation refused to die down.

Top Sahara executives claim that Roy has spent a normal restful life during these three months ' working lightly, holding regular briefing sessions with top managers while resting on medical advice.

“He works for four hours, does yoga and regularly interacts with his senior managers,” the spokesperson iterated today. He did not specify the place or time of Roy’s promised public appearance.

Last Saturday, media circles in Lucknow were agog that Roy would emerge from his sabbatical in Sahara Shahar, a sprawling office-cum-residential complex in the Uttar Pradesh capital.

Television crews were placed on alert but the Sahara managing worker ' as Roy calls himself ' did not make an appearance.

As the media and the corporate world wondered about his whereabouts, Roy wrote to his one million employees last month assuring them everything was fine.

In the message, Roy said he had been advised by doctors to follow a strict lifestyle, including enough rest and exercise, to cope with a stressful work schedule.

The rumours swirling around Roy’s whereabouts had also caused disquiet among members of a deposit scheme that is considered the bedrock of his empire. The scheme has as many as 61 million depositors.

Known to be close to several politicians and film stars, Roy’s business interests include aviation, housing, information technology, life insurance, power, media and a 24-hour news and entertainment television channel.

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