Today, May 16, will be two years to model-actor Shikha Joshi being found dead in her Andheri apartment with her throat slashed. The death kicked up a huge controversy.
Shikha's brother Vishesh began a hunger strike outside Delhi's Jantar Mantar to mark the second anniversary of his sister's death and press for a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) inquiry into it.
Shikha had accused Mumbai cosmetic surgeon Dr Vijay Sharma of molesting her in 2011, when she went to his Khar clinic, post complications after her first breast implant surgery. Denying the charge, Dr Sharma, however, calls the visit as one where she came for "negotiating for free breast implants".
He was granted pre-arrest bail in a case where he is accused of abetting Shikha's suicide. Vishesh wants the probe to get moving.
Shikha Joshi had accused Dr Vijay Sharma of molesting her in 2011
Dr Sharma's version
On Shikha's death:
Shikha had a husband, Narendra Kumar. She extorted Rs 42 lakh from him after threatening him that she would commit suicide by drinking a pesticide. I learnt of Shikha's death from TV channels. How can a person slit his/her own throat? I say, do an inquiry; transfer it to the CBI or whoever can solve the mystery.
On the breast implant issue:
I had done a surgery on her in 2005 for breast augmentation. She came back in 2011 because there was calcification in the implants. There was a dispute about the payment to rectify these complications.
On threat calls after the dispute:
I was receiving threat calls, with callers saying, "jagah khaali karo" and "paisa vassool karenge". I had filed a case at Khar police station.
On the molestation case:
Shikha filed a molestation case because she did not want to pay for the breast implants. She is an extortionist... In fact, in her confession in court, she had said, "The doc never touched my breasts".
On being accused of molestation by a TV journalist even before Shikha levelled charges:
I have become a target because I refused to bow down to demands, such as selling my clinic, as a builder wanted me to do so, for redevelopment. The journalist who accused me later asked for my forgiveness.
On being called influential by Shikha's family, so much that they feel unsafe:
If I were so influential, I would not have suffered in this way. I shut my practice a decade ago. One false case and misuse of section 354, which even the government has taken note of, instigates others to file false cases. Today, it's become a trend, especially to target doctors and get free treatment from them.
A brother's point of view
Refuting Dr Sharma's statements, Vishesh said the protest at the Jantar Mantar today would be massive. "I have a number of supporters; there will be posters and banners… I will do whatever I can to expose the truth."
He dismissed Dr Sharma's claim about a husband identified as Narendra Kumar and his sister threatening to drink pesticide. "We are not extortionists. The doctor is actually a serial molester," he said, adding, "Dr Sharma will definitely go to jail, and whoever is responsible for my sister's brutal death will hang soon. I want the murderer punished." Vishesh dismissed Dr Sharma's answers as without facts, and said, "The doctor has many business rivals, so maybe, they threatened him. We want a CBI probe in this case."