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Hunt for NRS dental student

Krishnagar, May 9: Police are looking for an NRS Medical College student and his mother after his wife was found dead in his Nadia home yesterday.

The brother of Priyanka Sarkar, 25, who hailed from Picnic Garden in Calcutta, alleged she used to be tortured by her husband and in-laws after she refused to yield to their demands for money. Priyanka’s elder brother Debasish Ghosh has lodged a murder complaint against her husband and in-laws.

Priyanka was found hanging from the ceiling of her in-laws’ home in Nadia’s Bogula. The woman, whose husband Kaushik Sarkar and father-in-law Sunil claimed she committed suicide, was declared dead on arrival at hospital.

Police said Priyanka, an arts graduate, had left her job with a mobile phone service provider after marrying Kaushik, a final-year dentistry student at NRS, last July and used to work as a primary school teacher in Bogula.

Sunil, a retired schoolteacher, was arrested and remanded in a week’s police custody by the additional chief judicial magistrate’s court in Ranaghat. Kaushik and his mother Sulata are absconding. The police said a case had been started on the basis of Debasish’s complaint.

In his complaint, Debasish, who works in a private firm in Calcutta, alleged: “My sister was tortured and killed by her husband and in-laws. Kaushik is still studying and so he did not have money to run the family. So he and his parents used to put pressure on Priyanka to ask me to give her husband Rs 2,500 every month to meet his personal expenses. But my sister had vehemently opposed this.”

A police officer said preliminary investigations suggested that Priyanka had hanged herself.

“We have received a complaint alleging that the woman was tortured by her husband and in-laws. We are probing the case. We are waiting for the post-mortem report to find out the exact cause of her death,” the officer said.

District superintendent of police S.R. Mishra said: “We are treating the case with all seriousness.”

The police said Kaushik stayed at a hostel in Calcutta. “But for the past two days, he was in Bogula,” another officer said. “Sunil Sarkar told us that Priyanka hanged herself last afternoon. He told us that he and his son brought down the body and took her to Bogula block hospital.”

Priyanka’s maternal uncle Ranjit Baidya said Sunil had informed him last afternoon that she had fallen ill and had been admitted to hospital. “When I reached the hospital from my home at Bagda in North 24-Parganas, I saw Priyanka lying dead on a trolley. But her in-laws claimed that she had been sedated. The doctors at the hospital, however, told me that she had died,” Ranjit said.

The officer said Priyanka, whose mother died last year and father passed away when she was 15 years old, met Kaushik through a common friend in early 2011.

“The two married after a brief courtship. Kaushik had insisted that they marry before he completed the BDS course. He had said that he needed Priyanka to look after his elderly parents in Bogula as he was studying and staying in Calcutta. After marriage, Kaushik used to brutally beat up Priyanka because she had refused to tell her brother to pay a monthly allowance to her husband,” the officer said.

Debasish, who brought up his sister, said he gave money to Kaushik twice.

Dowry cuffs

The husband and in-laws of a 24-year-old Hooghly woman who had filed an FIR at Dankuni police station three months ago alleging dowry torture were arrested within two hours of her complaining to senior police officers in Serampore. She also alleged that the investigating officer had demanded a bribe of Rs 10,000 and her husband and in-laws were not arrested despite a court order in April.