The post-mortem examination report of Akhil Bhartiya Akhara Parishad (ABAP) president Narendra Giri on Wednesday revealed that the seer had died of “asphyxia due to hanging” – a conclusion that adds weight to the theory that the mahant died by suicide.
His disciple Anand Giri and Bade Hanuman temple priest Adya Prasad Tiwari were formally arrested on charges of abetment to suicide and produced before a Prayagraj court, which sent them to 14-day judicial custody.
Both Anand Giri and Tiwari were taken into custody within hours of the seer’s death and were questioned after the 14-page suicide note held them responsible for “compelling” Narendra Giri to take the drastic step.
Body of Narendra Giri was found hanging from the ceiling of his room at Shri Math Baghambari Gaddi in Prayagraj on Monday evening. On the basis of the suicide note, Uttar Pradesh police sought help of their Uttarakhand counterpart to detain Anand Giri in Haridwar and brought him to Prayagraj while Tiwari was also picked up along with his son.
Sources privy to the findings of the autopsy report, that was conducted by a panel of five doctors at Prayagraj’s SRN hospital and the entire exercise videographed, said no external injury marks were found on the body of Narendra Giri, which further strengthened the suicide theory. “The post-mortem examination report has confirmed a V mark on the neck of the Mahant, which is caused by hanging,” sources said.
The doctors who conducted the post-mortem have directed for the viscera to be preserved for chemical analysis – something that is done routinely to rule out other possibilities.
Police sources said the fact that the preliminary examination of the scene of crime did not lead the investigators to any signs of struggle or resistance put up by Narendra Giri only reduces possibilities of any foul play.
“In such a situation, the only possibility of foul play would be that the victim is forced to hang himself or sedated and then hanged. The condition of the room in which the body was found hanging did not show signs of struggle,” said a senior police officer in the know of investigations into the mahant’s death.
Investigators believe that forensic analysis of the suicide note will further clear the air over the circumstances that led to the ABAP chief’s death.
“If handwriting of the suicide note matches with that of Narendra Giri, it will further consolidate the suicide theory,” the officer said. He, however, refused to conclusively declare the death as a suicide on grounds that investigations were still underway.
The SIT had also sent the nylon string which was used by the seer to allegedly hang himself in the room for a forensic examination.
Guards of the seer in his Y-security were also questioned in connection with the case.