Indrani denies attempting suicide, CBI to grill accused

Indrani denies attempting suicide, CBI to grill accused

Indrani Mukerjea, prime accused in the sensational Sheena Bora murder case, has told the police that she did not attempt suicide with an overdose of medicines but fell unconscious due to shock and trauma after hearing about her mother's death in Guwahati.

In her statement to the jail authorities after she was brought back to the prison on Tuesday from J J hospital, where she had been under treatment since Friday after falling unconscious, Indrani stated she had not accumulated the medicines to commit suicide, police officer, requesting anonymity, said.

The 43-year-old fainted in the jail due to suspected drug overdose and rushed to the state-run medical facility six days back.

Indrani stated that she was in a state of shock after learning about her mother's death, the officer said.

She also told the police that her condition had worsened in a similar way when she was a 13-year old, they said.

"The jail authorities yesterday recorded the statement of Indrani," ADG (Prisons) B K Upadhyay said.

The inquiry report on her sudden worsening of health leading to hospitalisation for suspected drug overdose will be submitted to Maharashtra Home Department by this weekend or next week, Upadhyay said.

The authorities have also recorded statement of those who had been on duty in the jail when Indrani's health worsened, police said.

Meanwhile, CBI, which took over the investigation in the case, today obtained permission from a local court to question Indrani, her former husband Sanjeev Khanna and driver Shyamvar Rai, all accused in the case, for 12 days in jail.

While granting permission to the CBI, the court said that probe agency can interrogate the trio till October 19 (the day when their judicial custody ends) and if it feels the need for further questioning then it may move a fresh application on that day.

The CBI had told the court that if permission for interrogation was not given it will have to rely on the investigation conducted by local police.

Indrani's lawyer had earlier told the court she did not have any objection to her client being interrogated by CBI.

Khanna's lawyer too said he was not opposed to interrogation but Rai's counsel objected to the CBI plea, saying the investigation in the case was over.

Last evening, Indrani was discharged from J J Hospital and shifted to Byculla Women's Prison, where she is lodged under judicial custody since last month.

After Indrani's hospitalisation, conflicting reports had emerged on suspected drug overdose in prison. While one report said she had overdosed on anti-depressant pills, the other said it did not any trace of overdose.

Indrani and the two other accused were arrested in August-end on the charge of murdering her daughter in April 2012 and disposing of the body in a forest in Raigad district, about 84 km from here.

Police had exhumed remains of a body and claimed digital superimposition of the profile of Sheena (24) had matched with the skull recovered from the forest.

Mumbai Police had also grilled media baron Peter Mukerjea, Indrani's husband, several times but he has not been made an accused in the case.

The case, after witnessing several twists and turns since it came to light in August, was handed over to CBI by the Maharashtra Government in mid-September after much filp-flop on the supervisory role of Maria, who was shunted in the midst of the inquiry.

The government had defended the decision of handing over the probe to the central agency, contending it was warranted due to multiple angles to the case, including possible financial motives.

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