Indore: Model-turn-spiritual leader Bhaiyyu Maharaj, who shot himself at his home in Indore, Madhya Pradesh on Tuesday was "depressed", the police said, referring to his suicide note.
The 50-year-old, who had top politicians and celebrities among his followers, wrote in the suicide note that he was "stressed out", according to the police.
"Some body should be there to handle duties of family. I am leaving to much stressed out, fed up (sic)," Bhaiyyu Maharaj wrote in the two-line note found by the police.
Popular to his followers as "Bhaiyyuji Maharaj", the spiritual leader had married for the second time at the age of 49 in 2017. His first wife had died in 2015. Reports suggested a rift with his daughter.
The police said his family would be questioned. "His wife and family were at home, their statement will be taken for the investigation," said Jayant Rathore, a senior police officer in Indore.
Bhaiyyu Maharaj recently made headlines as one of the five 'saints' to whom the Shivraj Singh government of Madhya Pradesh had granted Minister of State (MoS) rank in April. However, he had refused to accept it, saying "a post holds no importance for a saint".
Bhaiyyu Maharaj was born in 1968 at Udaysinh Deshmukh in Shujalpur, around 90 km from Madhya Pradesh capital Bhopal. Over the years, he developed links to several politicians, including many from the BJP and the Congress. He announced his retirement from public life in 2016.
"The country has lost a person who was a confluence of culture, knowledge and selfless service," said Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan. The BJP's ideological mentor Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) also condoled his death.
Former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister and senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh has blamed the state government for Bhaiyyuji Maharaj's suicide.
"He was worried about illegal mining in the Narmada by the Shivraj Singh Chauhan-led government and was offered the post of minister to shut his mouth. He rejected the offer and had told me about it on call," Digvijaya Singh alleged in an interview to news agency ANI.