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Tata exec cremated, no clue on killers

The last rites of Tata Steel equipment maintenance manager Ratnesh Raj were performed at Lodhi Road crematorium in Delhi on Friday.

Uncle A.K. Ojha said the 27-year-old executive died of liver infection caused by the March 10 gunshot wound with which he had been brought to Medanta Medicity in Gurgaon from Jamshedpur. The infection apparently spread to the bloodstream and affected the young man’s brain functions, leading to his untimely death on Thursday.

The unhappy development has also sounded the death knell for the shooting case in which police are yet to make any headway and were banking on the executive’s statement to zero in on his assailants.

Around 10pm on the fateful night, Ratnesh Raj was shot at thrice in front of his dentist friend’s apartment in Ghorabandha under Govindpur police station area. While one bullet went through his chest, two others got trapped in the shoulder and lower abdomen.

The executive was first rushed to Tata Motors Hospital in Telco and then shifted to Tata Main Hospital on March 12, where the pellet in the shoulder was removed. However, doctors in the city couldn’t stop the bleeding from his ruptured liver, where the third bullet was lodged and was surgically removed. He was airlifted to Medanta on March 14.

Ojha said that after a week of treatment in Gurgaon, there was considerable improvement in Ratnesh’s condition. “We were optimistic. But then, he contracted infection. A minor surgery in the liver was conducted, but the infection spread rapidly. He began loosing consciousness frequently,” the bereaved uncle said.

Ojha, a resident of Baridih, maintained that his nephew could not give any statement to police either in Jamshedpur or in Delhi. “A post-mortem was conducted and the body handed over to us. His parents (father S.P. Ojha and mother Shanti Devi) have reached Delhi for the last rites,” he added before taking Ratnesh on his final journey.

Several Tata Steel officials from the company’s Jamshedpur plant as well as Delhi office also attended the cremation.

Officer-in-charge of Govindpur police station Ratnesh Kumar Thakur, who is investigating the March 10 Ghorabandha shooting case, conceded that they were far from a breakthrough. “We are still in the dark about the assailants involved in the attack on the Tata Steel executive,” he said, adding that the case of attempted murder would now be converted into one of murder.

Are you satisfied with just police probe in the case?

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