Crime
Tiruchengode DSP Vishnupriya had killed herself in September 2015 when she was investigating the caste killing of a Dalit youth Gokulraj.

An investigation report into the suicide of DSP Vishnupriya by the CBI has found that there was no abetment to her suicide. The CBI report reaffirmed its earlier report that that it filed in April 2018 on Vishnupriya’s death. In the earlier report, CBI had mentioned that there were no evidence of murder or foul play in her death. However, her father objected to the report and approached the Coimbatore district court seeking to record statements of the witnesses under section 164 CrPC. The court had ordered CBI to continue further investigation in the case in December 2018 and ordered CBI to file report within six months.

The CBI report now gives a point by point rebuttal to the aspects raised by the district court when it ordered for continuation of the probe. Some of the issues that were raised by the district judge were the contradictions in the date of seizure of electronic devices that were in Vishnupriya’s possession, contradictory statements made by the Village Administrative Officer and the village assistant related to the date on which the gadgets were seized from Vishnupriya’s room and the non-examination of SP Senthilkumar, Vishnupriya’s superior officer who had called her hours before she killed herself.

The CBI, in its latest report, has stated that the reason for the contradictions in the date of recovery of the gadgets were due to the non-availability of investigating officer of the case on the date when the case was transferred to the CB-CID. The report also states that since the next day was Sunday, there was a delay in handing over the recovered items to the CB-CID by the local police.

“…It is humbly submitted that investigation into the suicidal death of Ms R Vishnupriya, did not show any abetment...,” reads the report that also requests the court to consider the closure report filed along with this report be considered.

Speaking to TNM, Arulmozhi, lawyer for Vishnupriya’s father says that they are not satisfied with the report. “One of the major demands that we put forth was that the seven police officers who were questioned by the CBI must be made to come to the court and their statements be recorded under section 164 (Recording statements of witnesses in the presence of a magistrate) of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC). That has not been done even now,” he explains. He also adds that the CBI should have investigated the case with a Superintendent of Police as investigating officer and not a DSP.

Tiruchengode Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Vishnupriya was found dead at her house in Namakkal on September 18, 2015, while she was investigating an alleged caste killing involving Dalit youth Gokulraj. Gokulraj was found dead on the railway track in June 2015. The case was sensitive because Gokulraj was allegedly kidnapped and killed for being friends with a woman from the dominant Gounder community.

A note, allegedly left behind by Vishnupriya, stated that the job she was doing had its own pressure and that she was investigating a sensitive case. However, her suicide note said that the case was the not reason for her death. She had also allegedly mentioned that she loved her job and that a mistake that she made was making her feel guilty and that feeling was troubling her. She also implored her parents to not create problems and to not make her death political or sensational.

However, the opposition parties demanded a CBI probe into her death and her parents alleged that she killed herself due to alleged harassment from her superiors. Though the case was initially handled by the state’s CB-CID, the Madras High Court transferred the case to the CBI in July 2016 after her father moved the court demanding a free and fair probe.