Monday, 30th October 2017

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Murder probe in XLRI death

The viscera report of Shashwat Dixit said he died of poison

By Our Special Correspondent in Jamshedpur
  • Published 18.10.19, 1:29 AM
  • Updated 18.10.19, 1:29 AM
  • 2 mins read
  •  
XLRI Jamshedpur Telegraph Picture

Bistupur police will investigate whether XLRI student Shashwat Dixit, who died on campus in January this year, was murdered.

The decision came after Shashwat’s father, Mumbai-based retired banker A.K. Dixit who came to Jamshedpur on Tuesday night, lodged a fresh complaint with the police on Wednesday under sections 302 (murder) and 120B (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC.

The viscera report of Shashwat said he died of poison.

“We had informed the father of the deceased student about the viscera report earlier this month after the report came from forensic science laboratory in Ranchi,” said Bistupur police station officer-in-charge (OC) Rajesh Prakash Sinha.

“The father had come on Tuesday night and wanted to change the section in his complaint. We helped him in changing the section of the complaint. We will be probing the case under sections 302 and 120B,” the OC added.

The police had earlier lodged a case of unnatural death.

“The viscera report states that significantly high level of pesticides, harmful for human beings, along with methanol and ethanol were found in the body,” OC Sinha said. “We suspect that pesticides might have been added to increase concentration of the liquor. We will be investigating the case afresh and might also speak to the batchmates with whom Shashwat had drunk that night.”

The autopsy of Shashwat was done at MGM Medical College in Dimna in January and the viscera was preserved and sent to the forensic lab in Ranchi in February. However, a huge backlog of cases led to a delay of eight months in getting the report.

The autopsy report of MGM was inconclusive as there was no external injury on Shashwat’s body. On the advice of the forensics department of MGM college, the police had sent the viscera for test at the state lab in Ranchi.

The police, based on CCTV footage and the statement of a lady security guard, had earlier said that Shashwat, a human resource management student of the 2017-19 batch who used to stay in room number 11 on the ground floor of St Thomas Hostel, had come close to the girls’ hostel, Mother Teresa Residency, 50 metres from the boys’ hostel around 5.50am on January 18. While entering a small hall outside the hostel, he fell face-first to the ground. The lady security guard screamed and ran out of the hall to inform others. Shashwat was rushed to Tata Main Hospital where he was declared brought dead.

Police during the investigation found that Shashwat had a few drinks during dinner the night before with four of his friends at a city eatery before returning to campus around 11.30pm.

“We would like to speak with batchmates to find out with whom Shashwat had spent time after returning to hostel between 11.30pm and 5.30am when he went out of the hostel,” OC Sinha said. “We would also speak to the friends with whom he had drunk liquor at the eatery that fateful night to see if the drink was spiked or not.”

Shashwat had already been selected by Accenture as a talent accelerator and was to graduate from XLRI in March.

XLRI director (administration and finance) Father Jerome Cutinha said the institute would extend full cooperation to the probe.

“We would like to have a copy of the viscera report of Shashwat which the police have not given us so far despite a written request,” he said. “We are ready to cooperate with the police in their investigation as we had done earlier.”