Russian MP Pavel Antov, 65, has been found dead after falling from a hotel window just days after his friend died of a “heart attack” during their trip to India. Mr Antov was Russia’s highest earning elected official and part of the main pro-Putin party United Russia.
However, the sausage mogul, who founded one of Russia’s largest sausage makers, had criticised the invasion of Ukraine and died while on a trip to celebrate his upcoming 66th birthday.
On social media Mr Antov described the war and air strikes on Kyiv as Russian “terror” on Ukrainian civilians.
He noted that a Russian missile strike left a girl being pulled from the rubble which killed her dad and also saw her mother trapped.
He said: “The mother is trying to be pulled out with a crane – she is trapped under a slab. To tell the truth, it is extremely difficult to call this anything other than terror.”
He later withdrew the comment and apologised, claiming that it was a “technical error” and “an unfortunate misunderstanding”.
He added that he has “always supported the president” and “sincerely” backed Putin’s goals in Ukraine.
On Thursday, his male friend died “from a heart attack” and the multi-millionaire politician died just two days later.
The politician fell from the third-floor window of a luxury hotel in India and was found lying in a pool of blood.
His death at the Hotel Sai International in Rayagada, located in the state of Odisha has left many suspicious given the number of high-profile Russian deaths of those who criticised the Kremlin’s behaviour in Ukraine.
On September 1 Ravil Maganov, the chairman of the board of Russia’s largest private oil company fell from a sixth-story window at Moscow’s Central Clinical Hospital.
His company publicly criticised the war in Ukraine calling for the “immediate cessation of the armed conflict”.
Some sources suggested he committed suicide while others said that he tripped and fell out of the window while smoking.
On September 12, Ivan Pechorin, a manager at the Corporation for the Development of the Far East and the Arctic who worked directly under Putin, was found dead in Vladivostok.
He reportedly fell from his luxury yacht and drowned near Cape Ignatyev in the Sea of Japan.
On September 21 the former head of the Moscow Aviation Institute Anatoly Gerashchenko was found dead are falling down “several sets of stairs”.
At least eight other Russian oligarchs have died in mysterious circumstances since the outbreak of war in Ukraine, all had close ties to the Kremlin and had adopted an anti-war position.
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India’s NDTV news organisation was told by a police official that they suspected Mr Antov’s death was suicide after he was left upset by the death of his friend who died in the same hotel earlier that trip.
Vladimir Bidenov was found on the first floor of the hotel unconscious in his room with empty wine bottles strewn around the room.
While Indian media has reported that Mr Antov “jumped” from the roof of the hotel, the Russian Consul General in Calcutta Alexei Idamkin told TASS that he “fell” from the window.
Mr Idamkin said: “We are closely following the investigation and receiving all the information from the Odisha police.”
Two other men who were on the India trip remain unidentified.