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Since 1st March, 1999
 
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Doctor dies, call for cash follows

March 7: Jayanta Ghosh, the doctor who went missing from his north Calcutta chamber last afternoon, was found with his throat slit on a bridge in Murshidabad and breathed his last while trying to tell police something.

A little after the 62-year-old physician (in picture) died on the bridge, a ransom call was received at his home in Salt Lake’s GD Block.

Soaked in blood, Ghosh was found by villagers this morning on the bridge on Mayurakshi river, close to Sundarpur in Barwan area of Murshidabad, 250 km from Calcutta.

Ghosh, clad in an off-white pyjama and cream punjabi, was still alive when farmers noticed him around 7 am. When the police arrived around 7.30 am, Ghosh motioned to them and tried to speak. “The policemen could not make out what he was saying. He died a little before 8 am,” said Murshidabad superintendent of police, Niraj Kumar Singh.

Around 8.30 am, his wife, Anima, a gynaecologist, received the ransom call. “The unidentified caller asked Anima to keep Rs 2 lakh in a bag with a red rose on it beside a red cabin on the circular railway platform at Dum Dum station,” said Prasanta Ghosh, the slain doctor’s elder brother and also a physician.

In Behrampore, Singh said it appeared that the doctor was thrown out from a car on the bridge after his throat was slit. There were marks on his hands and feet, implying that he was tied with a rope.

“We knew a physician was missing. We were also told that the doctor’s younger brother Achintya lived in Behrampore, 50 km from the bridge,” Singh said.

Achintya, an engineer, is a retired employee of the water resources investigation department. At Achintya’s house, the police learnt that he had left for Calcutta yesterday after hearing about his brother’s disappearance. His wife, Pratima, an employee of the same department, identified the body at Kandi subdivisional hospital.

Angry residents of Raja Manindra Road, where Ghosh’s chamber is located, and adjoining areas blocked Belgachhia Road. The blockade was lifted later.

A police officer said Ghosh left his Salt Lake house around 10.30 am yesterday. Around 2 pm, he went out of the chamber with two men in their early forties in a car. Anima received a call around 4.30 pm and was informed by an unidentified male voice that “Jayantada will be late”. The call has been traced to a public booth in Kalyani.

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