Wednesday, September 18, 2013

RR puts top cop on Sahay probe, suicide bid theory gains ground

R K Sahay

Clarity Only After Wife’s Statement On Burning Case 


Mateen Hafeez TNN

    Policemen inquiring into the incident on Sunday that left additional director general of police Ranjit Kumar Sahay critical with 55% burns say circumstances indicate attempted suicide, but they cannot be certain till his wife, who was home at that time, gives her statement.

    More clarity can be expected as home minister R R Patil on Tuesday asked joint commissioner of police (law and order) Sadanand Date to probe the episode. “I have asked Date to probe. But it will take some time since Sahay is in hospital,” Patil told TOI. 

    The 1986 batch IPS officer was admitted to Bombay Hospital with extensive burns on his face, neck, scalp and abdomen in the early hours of Sunday. His respiratory tract was also badly injured due to inhalation of hot fumes. Even two days later, no FIR has been registered in the case.
    Police haven’t been able to talk to the 52-year-old Sahay, who doctors said was still critical but stable. On Tuesday, an executive magistrate went to record Sahay’s statement, but was stopped by the doctors as “Sahay was not in a condition to speak”, said police. 

    The police had not recorded the statement of Sahay’s wife till Tuesday evening. “Until we talk to her, we won’t be in a position to say what went wrong at the time of the incident. We have not checked Sahay’s flat as well,” said a police source. 

    “So far, we have recorded the statement of a doctor who first
treated Sahay at the hospital. The doctor in his statement said Sahay had told him that a lamp, used for pooja, fell on him and he caught fire. We have also recorded the statement of additional DGP K L Bishnoi (planning and coordination) who told us Sahay’s family members had called him to their flat after the incident,” said a senior police officer. Bishnoi had helped the family rush Sahay to hospital. 

    A week ago, Sahay had called on leader of the opposition in the House Eknath Khadse to brief him on mental torture by his seniors in the Maharashtra State Police Housing and Welfare Corporation. Sahay had alleged that he was under surveillance and was being given showcause notices on petty issues.
    Sahay, a clean but short-tempered officer, was down psychologically, say some police officers. “He had changed his drivers six times in three to four months,” said one officer.     A senior bureaucrat said the home department has taken a serious view of the Sahay episode. “It was a shocking incident. Once Sahay’s statement is recorded, instructions have been given to the investigating officials to register a criminal case against erring officials,’’ he said. 

    The official added that all complaints made by Sahay against Deepak Kapoor, who was MSRTC MD when he was posted there, and Pravin Dixit, the police housing corporation MD, will be probed by an independent agency.
    Besides professional disgruntlement, one of the theories doing the rounds on why Sahay took the extreme step at his official residence in Avanti Apartments at Malabar Hill is domestic dispute: he apparently had a fight with his wife. A senior IPS officer claimed Sahay’s wife had in the past given an application about alleged harassment. Nobody could confirm it. 
    Senior IPS officer R K Sahay’s statement could not be recorded on Tuesday. Doctors turned
officer back, saying he’s not in a condition to speak
    No FIR registered even two days after Sahay was hospitalized with 55% burns
    Statement of wife and children, key witnesses as they were home at the time of the incident, not yet recorded
Sahay’s flat not checked yet

Sahay told doctor a pooja lamp fell on him
Police rule out theory that Sahay tried to kill his wife and daughter
Home dept has taken Sahay episode seriously, wants independent probe into his allegations against his colleagues
Sahay’s health condition unchanged
Continues to breathe with the help of ventilator in Bombay Hospital’s ICU
Respiratory output is low due to extensive burn injuries to the respiratory tract
55% burn injuries on face, scalp, neck, abdomen
and upper limbs
Massive swelling on face and neck, has been started on sedatives
Could take another 10 days before he tides over imminent danger
—As told by Dr Vinay Jacob to Sumitra Deb Roy

The Times of India, September 18, 2013

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