Cafe Coffee Day founder Siddhartha’s body washes ashore

Bengaluru: The body of Cafe Coffee Day founder V G Siddhartha, who went missing from Monday night, was found today in the Nethravathi river in Dakshina Kannada district of Karnataka after 36 hours of intense search, officials said.

The body had washed ashore near Ullal and was fished out by local fishermen.

Mangaluru MLA U T Khader said friends and relatives have confirmed that the body is that of Siddhartha’s.

Earlier, police said the body, which appeared to be that of Siddhartha’s, was yet to be identified by his family. “A body has been found, which appears to be his. Final confirmation has to be done by the family,” deputy commissioner of Dakshina Kannada district Sasikanth Senthil told PTI.

Mangaluru Commissioner of Police Sandeep Patil said the body has been kept at Wenlock Hospital for further formalities.

Siddhartha, the founder of India’s largest coffee chain, went missing mysteriously Monday night en route to the coastal city of Mangaluru. Teams of National Disaster Response Force, Coast Guard, Home Guard, fire services and coastal police scoured the waters under a bridge across the swollen Nethravathi river, where the 60-year old was reportedly last seen, to trace the coffee tycoon.

Siddhartha, also the son-in-law of former Karnataka chief minister and BJP leader S M Krishna, was last seen near the bridge in the Kotepura area Monday night, the police said.

Siddhartha had left Bengaluru for Sakleshpur in Hassan district in a car Monday afternoon, but on the way had asked his driver to go towards Mangaluru, the police said.

On reaching the bridge, he got off the car and told his driver he was going for a walk. A fisherman had Tuesday claimed he saw someone jumping off the bridge.