Pavel Antov: Russian sausage tycoon dies after falling from a hotel in India

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Pavel Antov, a Russian lawmaker and businessman who made his fortune in the sausage industry, has died after falling from the third floor of his hotel room while on vacation in India, the latest Russian businessman to die under mysterious circumstances this year. .

Antov was found dead outside a hotel in the Rayagada district of India’s eastern Odisha region over the weekend, police said. local media, two days after one of his travel companions, Vladimir Bidenov, was found dead in the same hotel. Bidenov was found unconscious in his hotel room, surrounded by empty wine bottles, according to local media reports. He was taken to the district hospital, where doctors pronounced him dead.

The Odisha police ordered its criminal division to take over the investigation into the “unnatural death of two Russian citizens” at Rayagada, the police department. he tweeted on tuesday.

Police Superintendent Vivekananda Sharma said Bidenov had suffered a stroke, while Antov “was depressed after [Bidenov’s] death and he also died.” bbc reported. the police told him indian media that Antov’s death appeared to be a suicide.

The Russian embassy in Delhi confirmed the deaths to Russian media. “The Russian Consulate General in Kolkata is following the case in contact with local authorities,” the embassy said, citing Russian news outlet RT India. “According to information available to the police, no criminal aspect is seen.”

Antov established the Vladimir Standard meat processing plant and amassed a fortune, estimated to be around $140 million in 2019, which landed him in Forbes. list of the richest lawmakers and officials in Russia.

He also served in the legislative assembly of the Vladimir region, neighboring Moscow, where he was a member of Putin’s United Russia party and chaired the committee on land policy, nature management and ecology.

In June, Antov appeared to criticize a Russian missile attack on a residential block in Kyiv, Ukraine, that killed a man and injured his 7-year-old daughter and her mother, according to the BBC. A WhatsApp message on Antov’s account said of the incident: “It is extremely difficult to call all of this anything other than terror.”

The message was later deleted and Antov posted on social media that he supported Putin and his invasion. The I attributed the above post to “an extremely unfortunate misunderstanding” in which he had accidentally posted a message from a person he disagreed with.

Antov’s colleagues in the legislature shared messages of condolences after the news of his death was announced. Vyacheslav Kartukhin, deputy chairman of the regional legislature, wrote on Telegram that he expressed his condolences to Antov’s family and friends on behalf of the United Russia bloc, after Antov died “as a result of tragic circumstances.”

“We value him both for his professionalism and for his personal qualities: he was delicate, intelligent, respectful of everyone. A learned man with a wide gaze, he won everyone over. For the legislative assembly, for the entire Vladimir region, the passing of Pavel Genrikhovich Anton is a difficult and irreparable loss,” assembly speaker Vladimir Kiselyov said in a statement. according to the Russian news agency Tass.

Antov celebrated his 65th birthday in India on December 22, Tass reported.

His death is the latest incident this year involving Russian tycoons and high-profile oil and gas executives. It follows a series of murky and unexplained deaths since the start of Russia’s war in Ukraine.

In September, the president of the Russian oil company Lukoil, Ravil Maganov, 67, He died after reportedly falling out of a Moscow hospital window., where he was undergoing treatment after suffering a cardiac arrest. At the time, conflicting reports were published in the Russian media, and it was unclear whether Maganov’s death was the result of suicide, an accident, or something more sinister.

In the first weeks of the invasion, Lukoil made headlines as the only Russian oil producer to call for an end to the war in Ukraine. In a sentence Issued just days after the February 24 invasion, Lukoil expressed “concern over the ongoing tragic events in Ukraine” and called for “the immediate cessation of the armed conflict.”

In April, the body of Sergey Protosenya, a former top manager at gas giant Novatek, was found in a Spanish villa along with his wife and 18-year-old daughter. Spanish outlet Telecinco reported that police found the mother and daughter in separate rooms with stab wounds. Protosenya was found in the courtyard, where he had reportedly hanged himself.

The same month, Vladislav Avayev, a former deputy chairman of Gazprombank, was found similarly dead in his Moscow apartment along with his wife and daughter.

Mary Ilyushina contributed to this report.

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