Sunanda: Crying hard in last hours

Belated but damaging revelation by a senior journalist to whom the deceased was known

New Delhi

In another belated but damaging revelation, senior journalist Nalini Singh has said that Sunanda Pushkar was tense and crying hours before her death. The TV journalist was the last person Sunanda called from her mobile, reports Zee Media.

In an exclusive conversation with the media house, Singh said she received a call from Sunanda at 12:10 am on January 17, hours before she was found dead in the room of a five-star hotel.

“At 12:10 am on January 17, I received a call from Sunanda. She was crying hard and was very tense. I thought it is because of the then ongoing Twitter spat between her and Pakistani scribe Mehr Tarar. But Sunanda told me that Shashi has deleted messages from his BlackBerry Messenger. She said that as a media person, I should help her in retrieving those messages… But let me tell you that Sunanda discussed about Tarar with me six months back also during a dinner at her place.”

Sunanda was also unhappy because of a meeting between her husband and Tarar in Dubai, Singh added.  She suspected that her husband was having an affair with the Pakistani journalist.

Media interest in the case renewed after Dr Sudhir Gupta, the head of the forensics department at All India Institute of Medical Sciences, alleged that he was pressurised into showing that Sunanda’s death was “natural”. The AIIMS administration has denied Gupta’s allegation.

The controversy refused to die down on Thursday with Gupta sticking to his stand. Gupta, in fact, has written to the AIIMS Director seeking permission to interact with the media to clarify his stand.

On its part, the Delhi Police said it could question former Union Minister Shashi Tharoor and Gupta as well, if needed. Tharoor refused to comment on the controversy, saying it was up to the investigators to resolve it. “It is a process, we will leave it to investigators to sort it out,” Tharoor told reporters.

IPL ANGLE: BJP leader Subramanian Swamy, meanwhile, has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking a CBI probe into the death. He claimed that the issue involved IPL’s alleged money laundering case: hence it should be probed by the central agency.

Congress leader Rashid Alvi said in response, “Different kinds of statements are being made. AIIMS official has said there was no pressure from the UPA government. After AIIMS officials have clarified, such statements must stop.”

The CFSL report on Sunanda had hinted at drug poisoning but its findings were not conclusive enough to file an FIR in the case.

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