Russian sausage tycoon dies in India after falling out of window, police investigate
A Russian sausage magnate has died after falling from a window in India, days after a friend also died at his hotel.
Pavel Antov was said to have fallen from his hotel window during a trip to India, in the city of Rayagada, four days after another member of his travelling party, Vladimir Budanov, died from an apparent stroke.
Indian police are now said to be investigating the circumstances of the incidents, after a series of unexplained deaths involving high-profile Russian tycoons – who have criticised Vladimir Putin’s war in Ukraine.
Antov founded the Vladimir Standard meat processing plant, and sat on a fortune of £118m. He was also a local politician in the city of Vladimir, east of Moscow.
According to the BBC, last summer Anton denied criticising Putin’s war in Ukraine after a message was reported to have appeared on his Whatsapp account.
The Russian consul in Kolkata, Alexei Idamkin, told the Tass news agency police did not see a “criminal element in these tragic events”.
Police said on Tuesday, reported by the Guardian, the force was reviewing CCTV footage and questioning staff but there were no signs of foul play.
“All possible angles as regards to the deaths of two Russian nationals are being verified,” the regional police chief, Rajesh Pandit, told AFP.
“So far, it seems that Antov accidentally fell from the hotel terrace,” he added. “He was probably disturbed by the death of his friend and went to the hotel terrace and likely fell to his death from there.”
It was reported his friend’s death was due to a heart attack, caused by drink and drugs.
Antov reportedly responded to a missile attack on a residential block in Kyiv, by saying: “It’s extremely difficult to call all this anything but terror.”