Empee group founder M.P. Purushothaman’s rags-to-riches story is one fit for the silver screen.
The 75-year-old businessman hails from a poor family in Kannur in Kerala. At a young age, Purushothaman left home for ‘Madras,’ then the land of opportunity for young Malayali men trying to make a living.
Armed with nothing more than a higher-secondary certificate from a school in Kerala, the young Purushothaman began his career by setting up a hotel in Chennai.
From these humble beginnings, he grew to become the founder-director of the Empee group that has interests in the hospitality, sugar and beverages sectors.
Purushothaman’s children grew up as scions of the expanding Empee group. His son Shaji Purushothaman now stands accused of driving drunk and causing the death of a boy in Chennai. Oxford-educated Shaji (38) was the managing director of Empee Distilleries. He also held directorial positions at other concerns of the Empee group.
Shaji’s sister Nisha is now joint managing director of Empee Distilleries and vice-chairperson of the Empee Group. She is married to Ravi Krishna, son of minister for overseas Indian affairs, Vayalar Ravi.
Ravi Krishna now holds a top job in some of Empee Group’s concerns. He is also co-founder of Ziqitza Health Care Limited which operates the ‘1298’ and ‘108’ ambulance services.
The BJP had accused Ziqitza of landing government deals using the political connections of Ravi Krishna and finance minister P. Chidambaram’s son, Karti Chidambaram, who is also a director of the company.