Slow poisoning killed Sunanda?

Last Updated: Thu, Jan 23, 2014 07:16 hrs

New Delhi: Though her son Shiv Menon has ruled out foul play, the Delhi Police is probing the possibility of ‘slow poisoning’ being a probable cause of Sunanda Pushkar’s death.

Pushkar (52), the wife of union minister Shashi Tharoor, was found dead under mysterious circumstances in a posh Delhi hotel on January 17. 

Both Hindustan Times and The Indian Express reported on Pushkar being poisoned ‘over a period of time’ without her knowledge. Quoting police sources, HT said, “They were now ascertaining if Pushkar was poisoned gradually but would have to wait for the viscera report to identify the poison, the officer said… What remains to be seen is whether she was consuming a high dosage of alprazolam deliberately or was being administered huge doses by someone else without her knowledge.”

Doctors found 15 grams of alprazolam, used for treating panic disorders, in Pushkar’s stomach during the autopsy. Strips of the drug were also found in her bag.

The autopsy findings are yet to be disclosed but the news daily quoted sources who ‘emphasised on more than a dozen external injuries on Pushkar’s body that appear to be scuffle marks.’ 

Substantiating ‘hidden poisoning’ and the ‘scuffle marks’, an Express report said, “Sources said the five-page autopsy report mentions a deep mark on Sunanda’s left palm and an abrasion on her cheek. Police said none of these marks… were fatal in nature.”

The report added that investigators have found pieces of broken glass from the suite in which Pushkar died which suggest that there might have been some ‘scuffle’ inside the room. “Police said they suspect it could have broken during a scuffle between her and Tharoor… In their statements to the SDM, Narayan and Bajrangi, both of whom are the couple’s personal attendants, claimed they often had arguments and scuffles,” the Express claimed.

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