BHUBANESWAR: Steadfast on their demand for a magisterial probe into the death of Manipuri youth L Poumai, family members on Tuesday declined to receive the 23-year-old’s body which has been lying in the morgue at Capital Hospital since December 2.
Their lawyer, Ashpiri Zho, accompanied by residents of Senapati district of Manipur, met Governor SC Jamir on Monday evening and apprised him of the events which led to suspicious death of Poumai. They have sought Jamir’s intervention and requested him to order a probe into the case.
“The circumstances under which Poumai’s body was found hanging from a tree on the premises of a State Government official’s quarters still remain a mystery. We have strong suspicion that he was murdered,” Zho said.
Following a high level discussion between Governments of Odisha and Manipur, it has been decided for a joint investigation into the incident, the lawyer said.
A team of Manipur police will be arriving in the Capital City on Thursday to join the investigation, sources said.
Meanwhile, pressure has been mounting on Commissionerate of Police, which had initially claimed that Poumai’s death was suicide, and registered a case of unnatural death at Capital police station.
An injured Poumai was found near Balugaon railway station by RPF personnel on November 29. However, police claimed that Poumai did not lodge any complaint regarding how he sustained the injuries.
The deceased’s brother L Angelus challenged the police theory. “While travelling to Bengaluru on Dibrugarh Express, my brother had called and informed my mother about five youths abusing him and threatening him in the train,” Angelus said. Poumai was unable to understand the language of the miscreants as he was only conversant with Manipuri, English and Hindi to some extent, he added.
Contacted, Police Commissioner Dr RP Sharma said an Additional DCP-ranked officer has been entrusted with the investigation of the case. “The investigation is open and all angles are being looked into,” he said.