Coffee King laid to rest

Coffee King laid to rest

Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa pays homage to V G Siddharth Hegde.

A pall of gloom descended on the coffee land as Siddhartha, popularly known as the Coffee King, was laid to rest at the Chattanahalli estate in Mudigere taluk on Wednesday.

There was an eerie silence in the coffee estates in Seegodu, Theerthagundi and Halasuru. The plantation workers were given a holiday as a mark of respect to the departed soul. The people who had prayed for the safe return of Siddhartha were speechless.

Siddhartha's mother Vasanthi Hegde, wife Malavika Hegde, sons Amarthya Hegde and Ishaan Hegde, Siddharth’s father-in-law, former chief minister S M Krishna, his mother-in-law Prema Krishna and other family members were in grief.

The mortal remains were brought to Chethanahalli estate at 5.30 pm for cremation. The final rites were carried out as per Vokkaliga tradition. The funeral pyre was lit by Siddharth's sons Amarthya and Ishaan.

Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa, former chief minister H D Kumaraswamy, Chikkamagaluru BJP MLA C T Ravi, former ministers M B Patil, D K Shivakumar, M P Kumaraswamy, U T Khader, Sageer Ahmed, Kimmane Rathnakar, Adichunchanagiri Mutt pontiff Shambhunatha Swami and Chikkamagaluru ZP president Sujatha Krishnappa paid their last respects to the departed soul.

People chanted ‘Siddhartha amar rahe’ when the ambulance entered the taluk at 12.45 pm.

Schoolchildren, labourers, autorickshaw drivers and women lined up on the roadside to catch a final glimpse of Siddhartha. Residents recalled that Siddhartha conducted health check-up camps for the villagers and also built a community centre.

Ranjith, a youth, said Siddhartha looked after his employees like his own children. Siddhartha was mourned by coffee growers in Kodagu district too. Most of the coffee estates in the district remained closed as a mark of respect to the departed soul.

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