Cyrus Mistry, business scion and former Tata chairman, dies in car crash

His tragic death comes barely two months after his father, Pallonji Shapoorji Mistry, passed away in June.

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Renowned industrialist Cyrus P. Mistry of the multinational Shapoorji Pallonji Group and a former Tata Sons Chairman has died in a road accident on the Ahmedabad-Mumbai national highway in Maharashtra’s Palghar.

Mistry, 54 is survived by his wife Rohiqa Chagla, their two sons Firoz and Zahan, an elder brother Shapoor Mistry and other family members.

Also killed in the accident was Jehangir D. Pundole, of the famed Dukes’ soft drinks and foods company and the Pundole Art Gallery in Mumbai.

Another couple in the vehicle – Jehangir’s brother, Darius D. Pundole and wife Dr. Anahita Darius Pundole – have been critically injured and rushed to Rainbow Hospital in Vapi in south Gujarat), said an official of Palghar police.

Mistry’s abrupt death comes barely two months after his father, Pallonji Shapoorji Mistry, the Chairman Emeritus of the Group, passed away, aged 93, in June.

Taking serious cognisance, the state government has ordered a probe into the incident that stunned the corporate world.

Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis who handles the home portfolio, said he has spoken to the Director General of Police Rajnish Sheth and ordered a detailed investigation into the incident.

According to Palghar Superintendent of Police Balasaheb Patil, the accident took place on the Ahmedabad-Mumbai national highway, around 3.15 pm, barely a couple of hours’ drive from Mumbai.

“Of the four persons in the Mercedes car, two – (Mistry and Jehangir Pundole) – were declared dead instantly and two others (Darius and his wife Dr. Anahita Pundole) who were injured critically, have been rushed to Rainbow Hospital in Vapi,” Patil told media persons.

As per eyewitnesses claims, Dr. Anahita Pundole – a medico with the Breach Candy Hospital – was driving the car.

Palghar police officials have provisionally treated it as an accident, saying that Mistry and the Pundoles apparently became victims of “over-speeding” as the car hit with full force a highway divider on the River Surya flowing along the national highway near Charoti, around 105 kms north of Mumbai.

The impact of the crash was so powerful that although the car’s airbags were deployed, they failed to save the occupants – killing two and injuring two others – and the dark-grey Mercedes was left badly damaged.

Mistry was the sixth Chairman of Tata Group and only the second non-Tata family person to head the conglomerate.

He held an Irish passport on account of his mother (who was Irish national with Indian origins), and after acquiring his OCI, he was a permanent resident of India.

Mistry’s death has shocked and saddened the corporate world with several high-profile business leaders condoling his untimely demise.

In a statement, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) said: “TCS mourns the untimely demise of our former chairman, Cyrus Mistry. He was a warm, friendly, and congenial person who built a strong relationship with the TCS family during his time as the Chairman of the company. We offer our deepest condolences and prayers to his family and friends in their time of loss.”


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