The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Man slashes wife, hangs self

A businessman in his 50s inflicted serious injuries on his wife with a kitchen knife and hanged himself at his Dalimtala Lane residence, a stone’s throw from the Burtolla police station in north Calcutta. The injured woman is now battling for life at Calcutta Medical College and Hospital.

A suicide note has been found on the spot, written apparently by the businessman, Sanjib Shankar Saha, who used to run a book-binding business. But the note did not explain what led him to end his life after injuring his wife Sandhya. Preliminary investigation reveals that strained relations between husband and wife might have led to the incident.

“After interrogating the relatives, we have come to know that the two were suffering from physical ailments for the past few years. The woman, particularly, was under stress ever since the marriage of their only daughter, who stopped interacting with them,” said A.K. Ghosh, officer-in-charge of Burtolla police station.

After examining the wounds, police concluded that the businessman attacked his wife with an intention to kill. “Apparently, the man took his wife to be dead before he killed himself. The condition of the woman is critical. Doctors are keeping her under observation for 48 hours,” Ghosh said.

Pradip Saha, the deceased’s nephew, said he had received a phone call around 11.45 a.m. “I was in my factory in Maniktala when a caller informed me that my uncle’s apartment was locked and there was no response from inside. I rushed to Dalimtala Lane where he had been living as a tenant since 1987,” said Pradip.

Meanwhile, a worker from Saha’s book-binding unit at Patha Bagan also reached his house. “Nani (the worker) had come over on finding my uncle absent at the factory,” said Saha. “Both of us knocked on the door. But no one responded,” he added.

Nani then climbed the wall and peeped into the room through a ventilator. “I saw my boss hanging from the ceiling. I screamed in horror at the sight,” he said, adding that the locals then informed the Burtolla police station.

Police officials broke open the door and entered the drawing room. The businessman was hanging from the ceiling fan with a sari tied around his neck. “We found the woman lying on a bed soaked in blood in the adjacent room. The knife with blood stains was left in one corner,” he said.

“I tried to speak to my aunt. But she was gasping for breath,” the nephew said. Saha was rushed to Calcutta Medical College and Hospital, where the doctors pronounced him dead.

According to police, Sangeeta, the couple’s only daughter, grew up at her uncle’s house in Salt Lake. “Instead of her parents, she was close to her uncle from childhood. After marriage, she settled in Mumbai and stopped contacting her parents. Whenever she came here, she put up at her uncle’s residence. This led to frequent altercations between the Sahas,” added Ghosh.

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