The patriarch of one of Britain’s richest families has died at the age of 87, his family say.
Businessman Srichand Hinduja, whose family topped 2022 Sunday Times Rich List and was said to be worth more than £28 billion, “passed away peacefully” on Wednesday “looked after” by relatives, a family spokesman said.
The spokesman described Mr Hinduja, who was known as SP, as a “visionary titan of industry and business”.
Mr Hinduja became the centrepiece of a feud between relatives after being diagnosed with dementia
He had been at the centre of proceedings in the Court of Protection, where judges consider issues about people who lack the mental capacity to make decisions, in London.
The case hit the headlines in November 2022 after a judge said he had, at one stage during proceedings, considered placing Mr Hinduja in a public nursing home.
Mr Justice Hayden said Mr Hinduja’s needs became “marginalised” by a family dispute, notwithstanding his wealth.
He said at one stage he had concluded that Mr Hinduja should leave hospital, but said relatives had not found private accommodation despite the “extraordinary scope and reach of their financial capacity”.
“It is with deep sadness that we announce the passing of our father SP Hinduja,” said the family spokesman in a statement.
“SP was a visionary titan of industry and business, humanitarian and philanthropist.”
The Hinduja Group conglomerate spans much of the world and deals with everything from banking and oil to automotive groups, healthcare and cyber security.
The business was founded more than a century ago in India, but was run out of Iran for decades before the revolution in the 1970s forced it to move to the UK.
Mr Hinduja was catapulted into the spotlight during the early days of Tony Blair’s premiership when Labour MPs were accused of lobbying to help him get British citizenship.
Peter Mandelson was forced to resign as Northern Ireland Secretary at the time.
In a statement, the family said: “SP journeyed through life with deep humility and dignity, always seeking to bring people together in a common interest. He touched countless lives on his path, and we are forever grateful for the time we cherished with him.
“Amongst other things, SP will be remembered for his great contributions in bringing India and its culture to the global stage through his work and philanthropic efforts.
“SP passed away peacefully this morning, looked after by members of his family and we are at peace knowing that he will be reunited with his beloved wife and son in the afterlife.”
Brian Farmer and August Graham – Press Association