The Gupta empire burns a lot of cash. It has to sustain two private jets, houses in at least three countries, a long list of hangers-on pestering the family to buy coal mines and sponsor anniversary golf events, and much else. What happens when it runs out? The family’s lifestyle is expensive. A single flight from Johannesburg to Dubai in the Guptas’ Bombardier 6000 will cost about R380,000 in fuel and maintenance costs. Family weddings are multimillion-rand affairs. The cleaning service alone for the Guptas’ R330m Dubai mansion is R30,000 a month. It now appears that mansion was earmarked for President Jacob Zuma, so should probably be seen as an expense rather than an asset. The Oberoi Dubai, the five-star hotel of choice for the Guptas to put up everyone from Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba to Transnet chief financial officer Anoj Singh, starts at R4,000 a night. The presidential suite, preferred by younger Gupta brother Tony, according to leaked e-mails, costs R70,000 a night.And...

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