NEW DELHI: Controversial businessman Harpreet “Ponty” Chadha and his brother Hardeep were killed in a shootout during a quarrel at their farmhouse in Chattarpur locality on Saturday.
Chadha, who headed a massive liquor and real estate empire with political connections, was stated to be involved in a business dispute with Hardeep that flared up into an exchange of fire after an argument between the brothers in the afternoon, sources said.
The sources said apparently, Hardeep had fired the first shot. Ponty’s security guard was also injured in the firing.
Ponty, originally from Moradabad in Uttar Pradesh, had built up his huge empire reportedly worth Rs 60 billion with political connections.
He became the sole supplier of cheap liquor to vends in Uttar Pradesh during the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) regime.
Earlier, he had been a supporter of the Samajwadi Party of Mulayam Singh Yadav.
With Mayawati coming to power in 2007 at the head of a BSP government, he switched loyalties to her and was said to have benefited when the 16 companies he set up in various fields including real estate and film production and distribution were handed out lucrative contracts.
An Income Tax raid at 17 places in Noida and other places in Uttar Pradesh and Delhi in the run up to the Uttar Pradesh polls in Februrary netted Rs110 million in cash, jewellery and fixed deposits.
The authorities had also sealed 13 bank lockers.
Three months later, he had disclosed an unrecorded income of Rs1.75 billion to the tax authorities.
The Chadha group was founded by Kulwant Singh Chadha.