The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Prasun at CBI chief’s door
Priyanka wants truth

Calcutta, Oct. 9: Priyanka Todi wants to know the truth about husband Rizwanur Rahman’s death, a member of a state women’s commission team that met her today has said.

“Priyanka said she did not know if it was suicide or murder, but she wanted the truth to come out,” Sarbani Bhattacharya of the RSP told The Telegraph tonight.

Earlier, at a meeting with reporters, the nine commission members who had made the trip to Ashok Todi’s house had not mentioned this.

The thrust of their statements was that Priyanka still loved Rizwanur but would not speak a word against her father Ashok or the police. They had said the cause of Rizwanur’s death was not discussed.

“The objective of visiting Priyanka was to find out how she was doing,” said Jasodhara Bagchi, chairperson of the commission, a statutory body of the state government.

Not everyone is surprised by the timing and tenor of the commission’s meeting with Priyanka, probably her first contact with the outside world since the CID questioned her at home on September 28.

The one-hour afternoon meeting came just when some non-political women’s bodies were preparing to meet her.

“These NGOs seemed confident they would meet her later this week, so it was important for the commission to move fast,” a source said.

The commission claimed the meeting had been fixed earlier this month. “Priyanka said she had returned (to the Todi home) on September 8 because her father was in hospital and not because of police pressure,” according to Bagchi.


“She seemed in a state of shock but was calm,” said Bharati Mutshuddi, CPM MLA from Haripal. “She said she had married Rizwanur because she loved him and was not afraid to live a simple life.”

Priyanka’s last phone conversation with her husband was from Tirupati, where her stay was extended because her father “was not keeping well”.

“She told him she had left her mobile at home and so depended on the phones of her father and uncle. She said she would return soon but felt Rizwanur was growing impatient,” said Rama Das (RSP).

Asked why she had not visited Rizwanur’s mother, Priyanka said: “I have always been an introvert and now the entire city knows my face. How can I step out of home'”

Reacting to the panel visit, sociologist Bula Bhadra said: “The Todi house is not neutral ground, so it won’t be right to respond to what Priyanka told the commission there.”

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