The dirt is piling on Bill Gates, America's loveable grandpa

New Delhi, IndiaEdited By: Gravitas deskUpdated: May 18, 2021, 11:06 AM IST

(File photo) Bill Gates Photograph:(Reuters)

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From allegedly starting an affair with his employee to secret meetings with Jeffery Epstein, the dirt is piling on Bill Gates

Bill Gates was the poster boy of philanthropy. When he wasn't fighting polio in Africa, he was spending quality time with his wife. But as it turns out, Bill Gates isn't the perfect guy.

From allegedly starting an affair with his employee to secret meetings with Jeffery Epstein, the dirt is piling on Bill Gates. After 45 years of leading and mentoring Microsoft, Bill Gates was walking away. Better things like philanthropy and battling climate change awaited him, he said.

Watch: The Bill Gates affair

Turns out, he wasn't running towards better things but away from a chequered past. Bill Gates, an all-American family man, began an affair with his employee. It would stay hidden for nearly two decades. During this time, Gates built on his loveable grandpa image. He founded the Gates Foundation, toured Africa to eradicate polio and pledged to donate half his wealth to charity.

His secret affair would have most likely remained a secret, if not for the MeToo movement. In 2019, Microsoft received a complaint from an employee. She accused Gates of trying to initiate an affair. This violated company policy and the skewed power dynamics. Microsoft roped in a law firm to investigate. But before they could finish the probe, Gates resigned. Was this a coincidence or a backdoor deal? Reports say the company's directors wanted Gates out. They felt his relationship with the employee was inappropriate.

The company isn't talking much about the controversy and Gates denies any link between the affair and his exit. A spokeswoman for Gates had this to say: “There was an affair almost 20 years ago which ended amicably. The decision to transition off the board was in no way related to this matter."

Bill and Melinda Gates announced their divorce earlier this month. Some reports say Melinda was unsettled by her husband's connections with Jeffrey Epstein. Gates is said to have met Epstein multiple times including at Epstein's notorious New York townhouse. Gates's spokeswoman did not deny the meetings but she says they have been wrongly characterised.

Bill Gates's loveable grandpa image has been shredded. So it's time we ask the uncomfortable question - Was the world's biggest charity drive a shot at redemption?