Phuge was a money lender from Pune in Maharashtra state and was nicknamed, "gold man", a title he cherished.
Police said Phuge,was attacked and killed by 12 assailants brandishing stones and sharp weapons on Thursday night after one of the suspects invited him and his son to a birthday party, according to the Press Trust of India (PTI) news agency.
According to local police inspector Navnath Ghogare:
"As per preliminary information, Phuge and his son were invited by one of the suspects, who know each other, to celebrate a birthday. However, we are investigating how Phuge reached the open ground where he was murdered."Phuge's 22-year-old son witnessed his father being murdered and had been spared by the alleged killers, he added, saying that police suspected the motive could have been a dispute over a money transaction.
Four suspects have since been detained.
Phuge loved gold and the fame that came with his shirt.
"Everybody knows me as the 'gold man' in the whole region. Other rich people spend one crore (10 million rupees) to buy Audis or Mercedes, to buy what they like. What crime have I done? I just love gold," he told AFP in 2013. "Gold has always been my passion since a young age. I've always worn gold as jewellery in the form of bracelets, rings, chains," he added.
Source: Press Trust of India