Kolkata: Members of the Birla family bade an emotional adieu to its patriarch B K Birla as his last rites were performed in the city on Thursday, on the auspicious day of Rath Yatra.
His mortal remains were consigned to flames on a traditional wooden pyre at the Keoratala crematorium in south Kolkata.
Earlier, the body of the Birla Group patriarch, fondly known as BK or BK Babu among his peers, was flown in from Mumbai and taken to his Birla Park residence in the city.
The industrialist breathed his last in Mumbai on Wednesday.
Birla’s body was kept on the lawns of the bungalow to allow people to pay their homage. Most of the family members were present in the traditional funeral attire.
Grandson Kumar Mangalam Birla, who had taken the industrialist to Mumbai due to his failing health, stayed close to his grandfather’s body all along till it was taken away for cremation at 1.15 pm from Birla Park.
Besides the patriarch’s daughters Manjushree Khaitan and Jayshree Mohta, prominent Birla family members such as S K Birla, Shobhana Bhartia and CK Birla were present at the residence.
Hundreds of people — friends, well-wishers, employees of the Birla group and students of the institutes managed by the family — poured in to pay their respect at Birla Park.
Several city-based prominent industrialists paid condolences and visited the Birla residence since the sad news came on Wednesday.
Birla, the chairman of Century Textiles and Industries, passed away at the age of 98 in Mumbai. His family said he had been suffering from age-related ailments.