Death Unnatural, Sudden; Body had Injury Marks, Say Doctors

Sleeping pill overdose angle not ruled out, say Delhi Police; Sunanda Tharoor’s body cremated

Published: 19th January 2014 07:08 AM  |   Last Updated: 19th January 2014 08:08 AM   |  A+A-


The mystery surrounding the death of Union minister Shashi Tharoor’s wife Sunanda Pushkar deepened on Saturday after doctors who conducted the autopsy confirmed it was a case of sudden and unnatural death, adding that injury marks have been found on the body. Sunanda was found dead in room 345 of a five-star hotel here on Friday evening. The Tharoors had checked into the hotel on Thursday as their home was being painted.

A team of three senior doctors conducted two post-mortem procedures and preserved certain biological samples for toxicological analysis as well as visco-pathological examination. Dr Sudhir Gupta, head of the Forensic Sciences Department of AIIMS, said it could take a few days to ascertain the reason for her sudden death after receiving the toxicological analysis and visco-pathological examination reports. He said Sunanda’s viscera has been preserved to determine whether there was poisoning.

“We are focusing on investigating the reason for her sudden, unnatural death. Physical injuries on Sunanda’s body may or may not be related to her death. I cannot reveal the details of the injuries. Basically in medico-legal cases, the number of injuries does not matter. Whether these injuries were related to fatality or not matters,” Gupta said.

Meanwhile, Sunanda was cremated in the presence of her son Shiv Menon (from a previous marriage), Shashi Tharoor, close family friends and junior home minister R P N Singh. Shiv Menon lit the pyre. Her father and brother were among the family members present at the crematorium.

Delhi Police sources said the reason behind her death was still up in the air and investigators are examining evidence collected. However, they did not rule out an overdose of sleeping pills as a reason for the sudden death indicating that she may have died between 3 and 7 pm.

Investigation on, Autopsy Details not Divulged

Doctors who conducted two autopsy procedures on Union Minister Shashi Tharoor’s wife Sunanda Pushkar, who was found dead mysteriously in a Delhi hotel on Friday, said it could take a few days to ascertain the reason for her sudden death.

Dr Sudhir Gupta, head of the Forensic Sciences Department of AIIMS, refused to divulge details related to the nature of injuries on Sunanda’s body saying they have recorded all the injury marks and videographed the entire autopsy procedure.

“Since investigating agencies are working on the case, we will not reveal details related to the injury marks,” Gupta said. “We have questioned the hotel staff and analysed CCTV footage. We are also looking into the report of injury marks mentioned by the doctors in the preliminary autopsy report although there was no sign of scuffle in the hotel room. We are going to probe all angles and examine details of her i-pad and i-Phone,” a police source said.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh expressed his deepest condolence over the demise of Sunanda. In a letter to his colleague, Manmohan Singh said he was shocked and deeply sad. “It is with shock and deep sadness that I learnt about your bereavement. The loss of one’s companion is indeed irreparable but I would like you to know that we are with you in this hour of grief. May God give you strength to tide over this difficult time,” Singh wrote.

After Sunanda’s cremation, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi visited Tharoor’s residence, where she offered her condolences to the family. She was accompanied by Congress leaders Ahmed Patel and Ambika Soni.

Earlier this week Sunanda was involved in a twitter spat with Pakistani journalist Mehr Tarar over her alleged affair with Shashi Tharoor. Later, the couple had issued a statement denying rift.


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