Tejpal got Ponty Chadha to fund club for ‘select Indians...great intimacy’

TejpalTarun Tejpal joined hands with controversial liquor baron Ponty Chadha before he was killed last year.

In what is seen as the coming together of unlike minds, Tarun Tejpal, the founder and former editor-in-chief of Tehelka, joined hands with controversial liquor baron Ponty Chadha before he was killed last year to start an exclusive private club for "select urban Indians".

Called 'Prufrock', the club, in Tejpal's own words, aims to be "a vibrant cultural space, where a highly accomplished, eclectic community of select urban Indians can meet and engage in an atmosphere of great intimacy with eminent people who make and shape the world".

"All this over fine drinks and exquisite cuisines created by a celebrity chef," Tejpal said in an email invitation to prospective members.

Officials in Wave Industries, the flagship company of the Chadha Group, said Chadha decided to invest in Prufrock in early 2012 after Tejpal made a business presentation on the concept of an exclusive private club.

Chadha was killed in a shootout in his farmhouse in Delhi in November 2012 but his son Manpreet 'Monty' Chadha decided to honour all business commitments of his father, they said.

Prufrock is owned by Thriving Arts Pvt Ltd, which was set up in June this year. On July 10, the company issued shares to two stakeholders at Rs 10 per share — 72 per cent to Tejpal and 28 per cent to his sister Neena Tejpal.

On August 26, Chadha Hotel's Pvt Ltd invested Rs 2 crore for 11,111 shares issued at Rs 1,800 per share.

"Chadha Group invested in this company after a detailed presentation on the concept of the business. Our investment was from the point of view of profit and exit when it appreciates. We are not involved in the daily operations," a Chadha Group spokesperson told The Indian Express.

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