The courtyard in front of the LIC office where Tarun Moitra fell from the roof. (Amit Datta)
A 54-year-old LIC employee was found dead in front of his office at the Taratala crossing on Thursday afternoon, his head smashed apparently under the impact of a fall from the roof of the six-storeyed building.
Police suspect New Alipore resident Tarun Moitra committed suicide.
“There was nothing unusual about him when he came to office this morning. Like on other days he was at his counter receiving documents of policy holders from insurance agents,” said a colleague of Moitra.
“When he left the counter around 12.05pm, I thought he was going to the toilet or for a smoke.”
The agents who were queuing up in front of the counter started protesting when Moitra failed to return even after 10 minutes.
“We lost our cool at one point and went to the branch manager’s room to lodge a complaint against Moitra for his prolonged absence during peak period. The manager tried to contact Moitra over his cell phone but failed to get through to him. The phone kept ringing. Within a minute, we came to know about Moitra’s suicide,” said Samar Sarkar, an agent who was waiting in the queue in front of Moitra’s counter.
The police said Moitra jumped more than 15 minutes after he left his counter. “It appears he took the stairs to reach the roof of the building and spent a few minutes there. He climbed the 3ft-high guard-wall on the roof before throwing himself off the building,” said an officer of New Alipore police station.
Moitra was childless and and used to live in an apartment on Tollygunge Circular Road with his wife.
Colleagues said he was depressed over the past few months. “When we cracked jokes during lunch break, he would remain mum. He was in the army and joined the LIC after retirement,” said a colleague.
“Moitra had been working in this branch for the past five years,” said another colleague.