Kanpur: Vikram Kothari, the promoter of Rotomac Global Private Limited, passed away on Tuesday morning. He was 72 and is survived by his wife, son and daughter.
Vikram, who was one of the leading businessmen of the state and had launched two popular brands — Pan Parag (gutkha) and Rotomac (pen) — breathed his last at his residence in Tilak Nagar in the city. At the time of the incident, he was alone at his home. In the morning, the servants found him unconscious and called a doctor who declared him dead, probably due to cardiac arrest. They first reported his death to his wife Sadhana, who was in Lucknow.
To recall, Vikram was initially involved in import-export business and parted ways with Pan Parag in 1999 after family split. He then launched the pen company Rotomac.
Vikram was the son of famous industrialist Mansukhlal Mahadev Bhai Kothari, who started the gutkha brand named ‘Paan Parag’ in 1973, which soon became a household name. However, following a split in family business after the death of Mansukh Kothari, the ‘gutkha’ went to his other son Deepak Kothari.
Later, Vikram also launched Kothari Foods and Fragrances, Crown Alba Writing Instruments, Mohan Steels Limited, RFL Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd., and Rave Entertainment Pvt. Ltd., besides group’s real estate ventures at Kanpur, Lucknow, Dehradun and Ahmedabad.
He was also given the Best Exporter Award by then PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Rotomac pens were once sold in 38 countries across the world.
However, in 2018 Kothari had faced heat from Central agencies after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) as well as the Enforcement Directorate (ED) registered separate cases against him and his company for allegedly swindling Rs 3,695 crore from seven banks from 2008. The CBI had arrested him on February 23, 2018 in a case registered by the agency following a complaint filed by the Bank of Baroda.
Apart from the CBI, the ED was also investigating his case. After being in jail for two years, he was out on bail due to illness. Recently, he had also suffered a brain stroke after he fell in his house and was taken to Delhi by air ambulance.
His younger brother Deepak Kothari said that the last journey of Vikram will start from his residence ‘Santushti’ in Tilak Nagar for Bhairav Ghat at 9 am on Wednesday. The business fraternity deeply mourned Vikram’s death. Relatives and friends thronged his residence to pay condolences