Charudatta death: Mumbai cops find crucial piece of evidence

Aug 05, 2013, 12:22 IST | Vinod Kumar Menon

"I go without fear or rancor..." "It was biggest mistake to join this company..." were lines that were jotted in the handwritten diary note that was maintained by the former Chief of Corporate Affairs and Communication professional Charudatta Deshpande (57), who was found hanging at his Vasai home on the afternoon of June 28.

The investigating police team laid their hands to this crucial piece of evidence from Charu's another residence in Borivili, soon after the Mumbai crime branch started a parallel probe.

Charu would jot his personal day-to-day schedules in the diary. Two diaries of 2012 and 2013 were found in which he had even mentioned about the happenings in office. And in one of the page he had even written notes and named some TATA steel officials in these pages.

"The content of the pages clearly depicted the mood of Charu, and it indeed reflects that he committed suicide due to unhappiness and frustration at work place and had no personal or family problem," said a police official.

The police have even verified the handwriting in the diary and it has been confirmed to be that of Charu.

Charudatta Deshpande
Charudatta Deshpande, a former chief of Corporate Affairs and Communication at Tata Steel, was found hanging at his Vasai home on June 28.

Meanwhile, a delegate from Press Club Mumbai had a briefing with Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Himanshu Roy on Thursday. The crime branch chief revealed that “Charu had no family disputes or problems at home, and that his frustration and disappointment was on account of his work place and his experiences at Tata Steel.’’

"It was discovered that Deshpande was the first person in Tata Steel – who despite being appointed at very senior IL2 level of seniority – was not confirmed in service after completion of his probation," said Gurbir Singh, President of the Press Club.

Gurbir added, Charu was subjected to various sorts of harassments wherein he was not given confirmation and his probation period was continued even after he completed six months in service. Also, Charu had suggested about conducting Public Relation activity at various places across the country, which was also turned down.

The Crime branch chief mentioned to the delegates that the general harassment of Charu became more focused and sharp after the publication of an article in Forbes Magazine on Tata Steel in February. "The article was not too negative of Tata Steel, but some Tata Steel managers perceived it so, and blamed it on Charu. It has been established that he was uncomfortable with one or two persons; and the harassment by his tormentors only increased after the Forbes article," he said.

"He developed a sense of frustration because of being sidelined and denied normal travel opportunities which he thought were very essential to fulfill his job profile. Only 2 of his 36 requests for travel were sanctioned. His request for an audience with the senior management was repeatedly denied," Roy told the delegates.

"It shows that the police have gone into depth of the matter and would put a logical conclusion to the case very soon," said Gurbir.

Mahesh Bhatkal, Charu’s brother-in-law said, "The police team have not approached the family after returning from Jamshedpur. We handed over the briefcase and diaries of Charu to the police for investigation. We are sure they are doing their job and truth would come out."

Meanwhile, the crime branch has approached former Forbes Editor Indrajit Gupta and author of the article Prince Mathew Thomas for getting more clues pertaining to the story that was published in the magazine. Gupta will meet the crime branch officials on Saturday.

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