He lived like a Maharaja although he was not one technically or legally and inherited palaces but sans a kingdom. That was 60-year-old portly ex-prince Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wodeyar, arguably one of the richest scions of a royal family in the country.
The last descendant of the Wodeyar dynasty, he also wore many hats: he was a fashion designer, a businessman, cricket administrator, a politician, hotelier and an investor.
A man of many passions, Wodeyar was known among other things for his fetish for imported cars and collection of watches. All his cars bore registration number 1953, the year he was born. He owned about 15 luxury cars. He was also an art collector.
"... I live like a maharaja without technically or legally being one," Wodeyar had himself acknowledged in an interview some years ago.
The people of city of palaces of Mysore, however, believe that though he lived like a royal, he did not think like one.
Wodeyar was arguably one of richest scions of a royal family in the country. He had declared assets worth Rs 1,522.53 crore in the 2004 Lok Sabha polls. He also had declared in the affidavit that he owned seven other large properties in South India, including the famous Mysore and Bangalore palaces.
Born in 1953, the only son of Maharaja Jayachamarajendra Wodeyar and Maharani Tripura Sundari Ammani, Wodeyar succeeded his father as the head of his dynasty in September 1974.
Dabbling in politics, Wodeyar was elected as a Lok Sabha member from Mysore for four times as Congress candidate. He had lost once as the Congress nominee and the other time as BJP candidate.