Death in tycoon family

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By OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT in Mumbai
  • Published 7.07.06
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Mumbai, July 7: A 66-year-old member of a leading business family was found dead with a slashed arm and a mystery note this morning with police not ruling out a property dispute.

The body of ENT specialist Navin Hiranandani, eldest of the three Hiranandani brothers who run a construction and retail empire, was found by his maid at his fifth-floor flat in Malabar Hill.

“According to the family, Hiranandani went to his bedroom around 10 pm. The death was reported around 7.30 am. The nerves in front of his right-hand biceps were slashed with a surgical knife,” an officer said.

The police, who have registered an accidental death case, said Hiranandani’s wife Sunita, also a doctor, and maid Chhaya were in the flat.

There was no suicide note, but a scrap of paper was found in the bedroom with the words “heart attack, no publicity” scribbled on it.

The note will be sent to handwriting experts to find out if the doctor himself wrote it, an officer said.

Asked if the doctor might have committed suicide, deputy commissioner Pratap Dighavkar said: “According to the family, he was being treated for psychosomatic disorders for the past 20 years.”

Navin’s younger brothers Niranjan and Surendra, who manage the construction business, did not take phone calls.

A police source said that though Navin didn’t help run the business, he might have been upset over some ownership and management issues.

Navin, the eldest of leading ENT specialist L.H. Hiranandani’s three sons, had taken up his father’s profession.

The younger sons set up the construction business, which specialises in developing large townships such as the Hiranandani Gardens in Powai and Hiranandani Es- tate in Thane. It’s now invol- ved in construction projects in Dubai.

Navin was professor of ENT and head-and-neck at the B.Y.L. Nair Hospital and Bombay Hospitals before joining the Dr L.H. Hiranandani super-speciality hospital set up by his brothers.

L.H. Hiranandani continues to be the chairman of the hospital.

Sources said Navin had a reputation for performing complicated operations.

Last year, reports said the younger brothers had discussed splitting the construction empire, with Surendra managing overseas ventures and Niranjan the Indian projects. The family denied this.