Sunanda Pushkar’s Death: A Case With Long Ghost Hands: While the circumstances in which Dr Gupta has revealed this piece of information in front of CAT maybe debatable, there is a little element of surprise in the news. The reason is simple: Pushkar had given a clear warning to everyone before her death. The death of Pushkar was sudden and mysterious. When the report of her death early morning on January 17 flashed on the television channels, the couple was courting a huge controversy.
Mail Today reported: At least three people were present at different times on Wednesday Jan 15 evening with Sunanda Pushkar in room 307 of the Leela Palace. After an ugly spat with husband, junior HRD minister Shashi Tharoor in the aircraft on Wednesday Jan 15 afternoon,
Sunanda refused to accompany him to his Lodhi Estate residence on arrival in Delhi. Instead she booked herself at the Leela. This is the friend’s account: After landing at Delhi airport on a flight from Thiruvananthapuram with Shashi Tharoor, Sunanda refused to go to the Tharoors’ government bungalow in Lodhi Estate. This paper had earlier The two had been arguing in the aircraft as well at the airport.
Sunanda went straight to the Leela Palace hotel and booked herself into room 307, not suite number 345, as was earlier believed. In the evening a close friend, who is also Kashmiri and lives in south Delhi, allegedly came to assuage and calm her. They were then joined by a prominent former CEO, also a close friend, who spent a couple of hours in the room, trying to reason with her.
Soon after this, another friend of Sunanda’s came. This friend soon realised that the situation was out of control, and moved into the room.
The other two friends left after some time. In the presence of this friend, an agitated Sunanda allegedly called up Mehr Tarar, the Pakistani journalist who she had accused of having an affair with Shashi. She continued to chain-smoke through the night and was nervous and stressed.
She continued to chain-smoke through the night and was nervous and stressed. Soon after, Shashi came to the room and was “contrite and apologetic”. But her rage was such that she refused to listen to him.
The next day, he also booked two rooms, number 345 - the suite Sunanda was ultimately found dead in - and number 342 for his staff.
Sunanda, one friend says, then began to feel a little less agitated and at around 2:30 on Friday morning, ordered a mushroom soup for herself and a burger for her friend. Sensing that Sunanda was feeling better, the friend left for the airport around 5am. That was the last time this person saw Sunanda alive. (Source Daily Mail of Jan 22 and India Today)
According to a police source, Narayan who held from kerala told them that he had travelled with the couple to Thiruvananthapuram on January 10. There, Sunanda had been admitted to the Kerala Institute of Medical Sciences (KIMS). On January 15, the couple returned to Delhi. The couple also had an argument during Thiruvananthapuram-Delhi flight which continued even after they reach Delhi.
This open display of differences between the couple, sources said, was seen by that time I & B minister Manish Tewari, who sat across the aisle from the couple. Tewari boarded the flight at Mumbai where he had attended a function.
Mr Tharoor’s assistant, Abhinav Kumar, informed the police at around 9 pm that Mrs Tharoor had been found dead in leela hotel room no. 345 of third floor, show severe bruises. Kumar said, Tharoor believed his wife was sleeping in bed, and he inquiried from the hotel staff, since when was Sunanda sleeping. Tharoor immediately called me over phone, he added. Central Forensic Science Laboratory team reached the hotel around 10:30 PM and immediately swung into action.
Kumar told reporters at the hotel that Tharoor and Pushkar were staying in a suite since yesterday Jan 16 as some painting work was on at home.
The Minister was away throughout the day in the AICC meeting which ended at 5pm, he came back between 8:15 pm and 8:30 pm.
According to police sources, Narayan, one of the attendants, who was present in Sunanda’s suite on Friday few hours before Sunanda died had told police that the deceased had not been eating properly and would sip only coconut water and smoke cigarettes. She took recourse to Hindi songs, tweeted sad songs before death.
Narayan told Police that he went to her hotel room at 6 am, and at 7:30 am Shashi Tharoor left saying he was going to attend the AICC meet at Talkatora stadium, though the meeting was scheduled at 10 am. “At 10 am, according to Narayanan, the driver came to the hotel room with an unknown man. At that time, the CCTV on the third floor of the hotel was not working, though the CCTV was active on other floors. All these are matters for investigation”, said Dr Swamy in Aap ki Adalat.
Narayan told police that he had left the suite in the morning. He further informed that he and Bajrangi, who is also Shashi’s driver, had called out to Sunanda on Friday at around 4 pm and again at 5pm. “We called out to Madam, Since she didn’t respond, we assumed she was asleep. Then we called sahab (Shashi Tharoor) and told him that she wasn’t opening the door,” Narayan told police.
The minister returned from the AICC session at around 8 pm, asked the hotel staff to open the bedroom with a master key. When he entered the room, he found her dead and called a doctor
According to the police officer, Narayan told them that he had travelled with the couple to Thiruvananthapuram on January 10. Sunanda had been admitted to the Kerala Institute of Medical Sciences (KIMS). On January 15, the couple returned to Delhi. The officer said Narayan claimed Sunanda did not return home to Lodhi Estate with Tharoor and checked into the hotel the same Jan 15.
The next day (Jan 16), Tharoor came to the hotel and checked into another room. The couple later moved into the suite. Narayan said he was in the anteroom when he heard the couple arguing on Thursday night, the officer said, adding that all these statements were still being verified with independent sources including hotel records:
According to Sunanda Pushkar’s close friend Nalini Singh, a journalist, and domestic help Narayan Singh, Tharoor had extra marital relations with several other women. When Pushkar came to know about it, differences between the husband-wife started brewing and their relations got strained. She was extremely depressed and angry.
Nalini told investigators that Pushkar wanted her help in retrieving some BBM messages exchanged between Tharoor and Tarar. According to the statements made before investigators, Tharoor met Tarar in Dubai in June 2013. They stayed together at a hotel there for three days. Sunanda Pushkar’s friends have given the police evidence to establish their claims.
According to a statement by senior journalist Nalini Singh, recorded before a subdivisional magistrate (SDM), the couple had been squabbling for a week before Pushkar’s death and had also got into scuffles over Tharoor’s alleged affair with Pakistani journalist Mehr Tarar.
Habitual offender to throw one wife to adopt another: Romance in Dubai to make alleged ISI agent Mehr Tarar his 4th wife
NAIndia reported: Tharoor’s spouse,Canadian arms control expert Christa Giles, was a huge advantage to him in New York and in Delhi, especially in opening doors to the literary and art circles so favoured by Sonia Gandhi. It was a definite advantage for Tharoor to have a foreign wife, especially a lady as educated and accomplished as Christa. What few in Delhi knew at the time Tharoor was being considered for a parliamentary seat in 2008 was that his relationship with his wife was breaking down.
Soon afterwards, and in almost as total secrecy, he began a friendship with a charming young widow in Dubai, Sunanda, who is Kashmiri. Only when Indian Premier League boss Lalit Modi was about to “out” the Tharoor-Sunanda link, the minister’s office released titbits on his Dubai connection, who had been given “sweat equity” worth $15 million by a Kochi consortium that won the IPL bidding, beating Ahmedabad.
Question is also raised on Hasiba B Amin’s picture with Shashi Tharoor. Photo with any leader is not bad. But it became controversial when there is a series of suspected activities happened. Many tweeters objected naming ‘Tharoor’ with ‘Sunanda’ because her last wish was to be separate from IPL accused and newly lover of alleged ISI agent Mehr Tarar. Hasiba Amin, president of the Goa unit of the NSUI might be helping hand in organizing THiNK of alleged rapist Tarun Tejpal’s Tehelka: Newsanalysisindia of Jan 31)
A senior doctor at AIIMS said Sunanda Pushkar could have died between 1 pm and 7 pm on Friday. The three member team that conducted the autopsy collected tissue samples from her body and sent it for a toxicological analysis and other tests to get more clarity on the cause of death.
* Days after her death, Sudhir Kumar Gupta, head of forensic medicine at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), who was part of the three member team that conducted the autopsy, said, “After post-mortem examination, we found it was a case of sudden unnatural death.”
Revealing that Sunanda’s body bore some marks of external injuries and bruises, Dr Sudhir Gupta, head of the forensic sciences department, All-India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) said that “the injuries might not be the cause of death”.
Why it was said that injuries were not the cause of death?
Was dual ministers pressured him for saying this?
In an interview to a TV news channel, Headlines Today, Subramanian Swamy maintained that “credible sources” told him that there were bruises on the body “from belly up”, and “it seemed that someone had held her nostrils so that her mouth was open”. He added there was evidence that her blood stream had traces of lethal poison of Russian origin. He claimed that all the photographs of Sunanda’s body, which were taken by the police, were destroyed.
Doctors have preserved viscera, blood samples and portions of certain vital organs, including the heart, for a histopathology. The final report will be handed over to the police in the next two days.
“The viscera samples include portions of her heart, lungs, liver, kidney, hair, and portions of the skin that bore injury marks,” AIIMS spokesperson Amit Gupta said.
Pushkar’s caretaker Narayan also claimed before the SDM that the couple had been quarrelling for days. “I had gone along with the couple to Thiruvananthapuram where they got into a heated argument over Tarar. We later returned on 15 January afternoon but on the way back they again started fighting,” Narayan told the SDM. He also said on January 16 night the couple had an ugly spat over Tharoor’s alleged relationship with Tarar. The quarrel continued till 4.30 am on Friday.
The caretaker also said that the injury marks on Pushkar’s body could be due to a physical struggle.
India legal rightly raised questions:
* Why was the probe handed over to the local police, and not the Crime Branch?
* Why was Tharoor’s mobile taken away, but was hurriedly returned even before the case was closed?
* If she had taken an overdose of drugs, why did the police not find any medicine bottle or foil of tablets in the room?
* How come in a five star hotel room there was nothing that the police found, not even a bottle of water?
*What did the close circuit television system of the hotel show? Was it in working condition?
India legal published following photographs taken after she died. If we look carefully we can see injury marks on her wrist, chin, neck and other parts of her upper body. These bruises throw up enough questions to justify a more detailed investigation into her death
Why was Sunanda Pushkar cremated in hurry within 24 hours, though the Delhi-police still awaits the visceral report? Subramanian Swamy also doubt on this?
Subramanian Swamy said that it was rare in criminal jurisprudence that the body of a person, who died in ‘mysterious’ circumstances, was cremated within 24 hours. He wanted the doctors who had performed the post mortem to be made witnesses by the police.
Swamy had then questioned Tharoor’s nervousness regarding his wife’s death, even as the Delhi Police investigation was in progress.
According to the Lt. Governor of Delhi’s rules, an autopsy has to be conducted by a three-member expert group each belonging to three different institutions to avoid any conflict of interest, in cases like these. But in this case, the autopsy panel was headed by Sudhir Kumar Gupta, professor and head of department forensic medicine, and included Adarsh Kumar, assistant professor, and Shashank Pooniya, senior resident; all from AIIMS.
There were severe bruises on parts of her body and face, pictures of which were taken immediately after she was found dead. Since there were no eyewitnesses, and none have come forward until now, police investigations revolved around circumstantial evidence, forensics, and medical reports. The most crucial among them was the post-mortem report by AIIMS, the state-funded hospital in New Delhi.
The manner of Pushkar’s autopsy has been in total contravention of the ascribed norms. But the city police is always known to be rather comfortable in constructing a tailor made report from panel members from one hospital rather than take a complex one and raise fresh issues for the case to get prolonged.
It must be noted also that the cases where post-mortems were conducted by members of different institutions had changed the whole case and the lead itself. For example, when autopsy was conducted on Anju Illyasi, wife of TV journalist Suhaib Illyasi, in 2000, the panel members came to the conclusion that the knife wounds were not inflicted by the deceased. This fact at once shifted the track of investigations.
There is enough circumstantial evidence to negate the possibility that Pushkar’s death was not due to suicide or even a drug overdose. Hours before her death she had tweeted that she had several health issues and that she would die with joy and smile on her face. Apart from Kanwal, she had also called journalists Barkha Dutt of NDTV and Nalini Singh. Even if she wanted to commit suicide, why would she do so without talking to one or all of them?
Tweet: Subramanian Swamy @Swamy39
Will file the PIL on Sunanda murder next week
11:00 AM - 23 Jul 2014
Dr Subramanian Swamy has termed Sunanda Pushkar’s death as murder since the event took place and the doctors at AIIMS declared it as unnatural death. Dr Swamy had alleged that Pushkar was killed using some Russian poison. The scars found on Pushkar’s body in the post-mortem report further helped his charges. Dr Swamy alleged that in order to prevent Sunanda Pushkar from exposing the underworld links and illegal money laundering in the high-profile cricket league Indian Premier League (IPL), she was put to rest by the Dubai Mafia.
Police investigators had said it could be a case of drug overdose or overdose of sleeping pills but added that things would be clear only after the detailed autopsy report was read.
They recovered two strips of alprax drug from her hotel room.
“The huge quantity of consumption of such drug may affect functioning of brain and leads to a comatose situation,” said a police officer.
A police source said she often took sleeping pills. The cops claimed to have found Alprax tablets from her room number 345. Alprax is a prescription medicine given for nervous disorders.
Sunanda Pushkar death: Experts say she would have needed 225 tablets to kill herself
According to leading independent forensic expert, Dr K.L. Sharma, “A person of her weight need to consume more than 225 tablets to cause death.”Dr N.P.Singh, Professor, Medicine, said, “It is unlikely that overdose could cause death... people survive even if a patient takes 100 times more dosage and it is unlikely that a person would die despite systemic lupus erythematosis.” Source India Today of Jan 21 (Autopsy says Sunanda Pushkar died of a drug overdose, no clean chit to Shashi Tharoor yet )
The experts also say that it needs to ascertained as to whether Sunanda was taking the medicine on the doctors’ prescription of on her own. They say that histopathologic tests must be conducted to ascertain the exact cause of her death. The police had earlier found some used strips of Alprax inside the hotel room where Sunanda Pushkar had been found dead.
Doctors say in most cases patients with such overdose survive if rushed to hospital in time. Unfortunately in Sunandaâ€™s case, sources say rigor mortis had set in the body by the time it was taken to the hospital.
Earlier, in their autopsy report, AIIMS forensic experts had said that Sunanda died of poisoning, but had shied away from clarifying what kind of poisoning. They also said that her body had injury marks but, again, had not specified what kind of injury marks were seen on her body during the autopsy. (Did Sunanda commit suicide by consuming 30 sleeping pills? )
Experts say that only the viscera examination might not be enough to ascertain how she died of poisoning. They say that an incomplete autopsy will be futile and unless histopathology is done it will be difficult to find out how she died. This examination will ascertain her exact cause of death... what kind of poision was there... Did her body react adversely to any medicine due to some inherent ailment or not: (Source India Today Jan 22)
(9) According to the Lt. Governor of Delhi’s rules, an autopsy has to be conducted by a three-member expert group each belonging to three different institutions to avoid any conflict of interest, in cases like these. But in this case, the autopsy panel was headed by Sudhir Kumar Gupta, professor and head of department forensic medicine, and included Adarsh Kumar, assistant professor, and Shashank Pooniya, senior resident; all from AIIMS
(10) IPL Commissioner Lalit Modi revealed that Tharoor’s friend (later his wife) Sunanda Pushkar had equity stakes in Rendezvous Sports World (RSW), heading the consortium that owns the Kochi team. It was later disclosed that Pushkar got sweat equity of the value of Rs 70 crore. Shashi Tharoor maintained that the amount had nothing to do with his active campaigning and mentoring for the Kochi team. This was less convincing as he had specifically mentioned that he had no specific gains from RSW winning Kochi Franchisee. The Prime minister Manmohan Singh later demanded his resignation.
(11) If not Jaipur Literature Festival then why was attending of Congress Mega Conclave?
Sunanda Tharoor had reportedly contacted the hotel staff at about 3.30 pm on Friday to order lunch.
At about 8 pm, Mr Tharoor had tweeted that he would not attend the Jaipur Literature Festival that began on Friday because his wife was unwell.
Mr Tharoor returned at about 8:30 pm after spending the day at a mega-conclave organised by his Congress Party, the Congress. When his wife did not open the door to the bedroom of her suite no 345, he asked the hotel staff to help him enter the room, only to find her lying dead on the bed.
* According to the Press Trust of India, Mr Tharoor’s assistant, Abhinav Kumar, informed the police at around 9 pm that Mrs Tharoor had been found dead.
In a significant development, the probe into the mysterious death of Sunanda Pushkar, wife of Union Minister Shashi Tharoor, was on Thursday transfered to the elite Crime Branch of Delhi Police, reflecting the complexities in the high-profile case.
Photo- dharmendrkr and SDM Alok Sharma
The probe has been handed over to Crime Branch two days after a sub-divisional magistrate directed the police to investigate the murder or suicide angles in the case.
“We will proceed in the case as per law,” said Special Commissioner (Crime) Dharmendra Kumar.
Sources said the case has been transferred considering its ‘sensitive nature’ and ‘complexities’ involved.
Asked whether Crime Branch will question Tharoor and 11 other people who had already given their statement to the SDM, Kumar said a decision in this regard will be taken after examining the case details.
The case was earlier handled by the South district police. It had questioned a number of staff of Leela Palace hotel in Chanakyapuri where Sunanda was found dead.
On Tuesday, sub-divisional magistrate Alok Sharma in his report had concluded ‘poisoning’ as the reason for Sunanda’s death and asked the police to investigate the case ‘thoroughly’.
52-year-old Sunanda was found dead in a 5-star hotel in South Delhi on Friday night, a day after her twitter spat with Pakistani journalist Mehr Tarar over an alleged affair with Tharoor.
“I have ordered the Delhi Police to further probe the mysterious death of Sunanda Pushkar as she is found to have died due to poisoning,” Alok Sharma, the SDM of Vasant Vihar, told Mail Today.
The police have also seized all mails exchanged between Tharoor and Pakistani journalist Mehr Tarar.
Itelephone call details of the couple and the hotel’s CCTV camera footage.
ISources said a suicide note has not been found.
In a report to the police, SDM, who has recorded the statements of Sunanda’s brother, son, Tharoor and his staff, said that no family member suspected any foul play in the death.
The couple’s driver, Bajrang, told the police that Tharoor had an argument with Sunanda on Thursday evening. He told the police that the couple also had arguments during their recent stay in Thiruvananthapuram.
A crime branch team also visited the luxury hotel in connection with the case and questioned hotel staff. The police is also examining the telephone call details of the couple and the hotel’s CCTV camera footage.
* Typical of Bina Ramani, said people who knew her, to be so worried about saving her own skin first. A family friend of the Lalls, who was at the Apollo hospital at the time, recalled: “She then told Sabrina and her parents to forget about what had happened. She said, Jessica won’t come back, and advised them to forget about everything. ‘You don’t know the people you are up against. They are rich and dangerous. You will not achieve anything.’ I was shocked.”
That time owner of Tamarind bar now fashion designer Bina Ramani said, “It wasn’t sustenance that Sunanda wanted from Tharoor. Her personal assets, duly listed on the PMO website, include 12 apartments in Dubai, one in Canada, real estate in Jammu, jewellery and designer watches worth Rs 7 crore and an equal sum in bank deposits. At last count, she was worth Rs 113 crore apart from an unevaluated sword, an artefact all the way from Mughal emperor Humayun’s reign.”
Timeline Here is a timeline of the events that unfolded since Pushkar’s death:
January 17, 2014: Sunanda Pushkar, wife of former Union Minister Shashi Tharoor, found dead under mysterious circumstances in suite no 345 of Hotel Leela Palace in New Delhi. While police suspected she might have committed suicide, the possibility of medicine overdose was not ruled out since Pushkar was undergoing medical treatment. Inquest proceedings under Section 174 CrPC were initiated in the Sunanda case according to which a sub-divisional magistrate inquires into the death of a woman if she dies within seven years of her marriage.
January 19: The doctors who conducted postmortem on Sunanda Pushkar Tharoor at AIIMS said it appeared to be a case of “sudden, unnatural death”, and that she had “certain injuries on the body”. The autopsy report of Sunanda was learnt to have said that she died due to “poisoning” and neither confirmed nor ruled out suicide. The autopsy board included two other doctors, additional professor of forensic medicine Dr Adarsh Kumar and a senior resident in the department, Dr Shashank Puniya. The autopsy report had mentioned more than a dozen injury marks on Sunanda’s hands and an abrasion on her cheek which suggests a “use of blunt force”, besides a “deep teeth bite” on the edge of her left palm. Although “nominal traces” of the anti-anxiety drug Alprazolam were found, there were “no findings suggestive of drug overdose”.
January 19: Kerala Institute of Medical Sciences (KIMS), where Sunanda Tharoor had undergone treatment from January 12 to 14, said that she was not diagnosed with any life-threatening disease. KIMS Hospital director and cardiologist Dr G Vijayaraghavan said Pushkar was not diagnosed with any serious medical condition that could cause immediate death.
January 21: The subdivisional magistrate (SDM) who was heading the inquest said that Sunanda died of poisoning. In his report, the SDM has said that Sunanda has died of poisoning and has asked police to probe the cause of poisoning. Alok Sharma, the SDM has also asked the police to specifically probe the murder/suicide angle. The SDM, in his report, had said Sunanda could have died in “just three ways, homicidal, suicidal and accidental” and police should investigate further to ascertain the reason of her death. The SDM said under section 176 of CrPC his job
detailed report on the specific allegations levelled by a doctor, who headed the panel that conducted the post-mortem on Sunanda Pushkar.
July 02: Sunanda Pushkar’s husband and former Union minister Shashi Tharoor demanded a “clear and definitive conclusion” to the case. In a statement on Facebook, the Congress leader asserted that he had been, since the beginning, demanding thorough, rapid and transparent investigation into the case, adding that he had cooperated with the authorities fully.
July 02: With a senior AIIMS forensic doctor reportedly alleging that he was pressurised to manipulate the autopsy report of Sunanda Pushkar,Delhi Police said it will “examine” him and former Union Minister Shashi Tharoor if needed.