'Baba Ka Dhaba' owner Kanta Prasad allegedly attempts suicide, hospitalized
Kanta Prasad, 80, the owner of the popular "Baba Ka Dhaba" eatery in South Delhi, allegedly tried to kill himself last night and is currently admitted to the Safdarjung Hospital in the city. He was rushed to the hospital in an unconscious state around 11:30 pm on Thursday. Prasad had been facing financial troubles for the past few months after his new restaurant failed.
Police said they received an emergency call from the hospital last night. "Police rushed to the spot and found that he is Kanta Prasad. He is currently undergoing treatment. His wife informed the police that he had been depressed for the last few days," an official said, according to The Indian Express. Prasad's son, Karan, said his father had consumed alcohol and sleeping pills.
"I don't know what did he eat...He fell unconscious, I was sitting at the dhaba. I brought him here. Doctor has not told us anything so far. I don't know what was going on in his mind," said Badami Devi, Prasad's wife, according to ANI.
Prasad and his roadside stall first shot to fame last year when an emotional video of him talking about his financial issues was widely shared on social media. That video was shot and posted by YouTuber Gaurav Wasan. Soon after, donations began pouring in for the 80-year-old from several corners and people flooded his small eatery to taste the food.
So guys I went to #MalviyaNagar and found these very old couple working hard to earn a living, when I went there and saw them struggling, I couldn't stop but cried. They said they start early at 6.30 am and by 1.30 am they could only earn Rs 60/- #VocalForLocal pic.twitter.com/avyXXVaMF2— Gaurav Wasan (@gauravwasan08) October 8, 2020
Prasad then decided to invest his growing wealth into a restaurant in the same area. Though the venture picked up well initially, the footfall soon reduced and losses began piling up. The monthly cost of running the restaurant was around Rs. 1 lakh, but the returns never crossed Rs. 40,000, he said. He shut the restaurant this February and returned to his old stall.
However, this seemingly sweet success story had turned sour after Prasad filed a police case against Wasan for allegedly swindling the donations meant for him. Wasan had denied the allegations. Just days ago, Prasad apologized to Wasan in a fresh video, saying he made a mistake by accusing him. Wasan then shared a picture with the elderly couple, writing, "All's well that ends well."
In case you need help or know someone who does, you can reach out to AASRA for suicide prevention counseling. Their number is 022 2754 6669 (24 hours). You can also contact the Hyderabad-based Roshni NGO at +914066202000 or COOJ at +918322252525. Sneha India Foundation, which works 24X7, can be contacted at +914424640050. Vandrevala Foundation has trained counselors, and their number is 18602662345.