Unable to bear the shock of his wife filing a petition for annulment of marriage, a 30-year-old man yesterday allegedly committed suicide by jumping off the ninth floor of the Bharti Vidyapith Bhavan, the building that houses the family court in the city.
The deceased was identified as Navnath Rohidas Dhanepkar of Panshet and used to work as a clerk with the irrigation department in Wadgaon. His 24-year-old wife, a resident of Mundhwa, works in the same department in the city.
The incident happened around noon, just after an argument with his wife. The police said Dhanepkar had exhibited suicidal tendencies in the past. They said he had even attempted suicide before and several times told his wife he would kill himself.
Pratibha Ghorpade, the lawyer of Dhanepkar’s wife, said the two had met between July and September 2010 during a training session.
“Later, the deceased expressed his love for his colleague. He told her that it was love at first sight, but she tried to keep a distance and told him that she wanted them to remain good friends only,” Ghorpade said.
The lawyer said Dhanepkar then started wooing her with sweet talk while also threatening to commit suicide if she rejected him. Ghorpade said once Dhanepkar once even tried to cut his veins.
“My client had tried to convince him that her parents would never accept their marriage as they belonged to different castes, but Dhanepkar pressured her with his suicide threats and made her marry him on December 15, 2010 at the marriage registration office,” Ghorpade said. “But they started living separately and concealed their marriage from the parents.”
The lawyer said on May 27, 2011, Dhanepkar arrived at his wife’s home in the city and told her parents that he had consumed insecticide and would die soon, but it turned out to be a false claim.
“When he was shifted to Sassoon hospital, the doctors had said that he was just acting and had not really consumed the insecticide,” Ghorpade said. Later on, when his wife expressed her desire to make known that they were married, he again threatened suicide.
“The deceased often used to be too possessive about her and sometime used to torture her physically and mentally. Fed up with the constant torture and harassment, she filed for annulment of marriage,” Ghorpade said. “She wanted their marriage to be rendered null and void.”
Police Inspector (Crime) Rajendra Sawant said yesterday the case was about to go on board when Dhanepkar and his wife had a dispute, following which Dhanepkar suddenly ran towards a room and plunged to his death from the ninth floor of the Bharti Vidyapith Bhavan.
He was rushed to the Poona Hospital, where he was declared dead. “We have lodged an accidental death case and further investigation is on,” Sawant said.
‘Shift family court out of high rise’
Some lawyers at the family court said they had been asking the authorities to shift the court from its current location in Bharti Vidyapith Bhavan to the Shivajinagar court as in the past as well there had been some incidents where people had tried to commit suicide by jumping off the ninth floor, where the court is located.