'Life threat claim': Police begins probe, yet to record Indrani Mukerjea's statement

Apr 12, 2018, 20:49 IST | Mid-day online desk

"We have received an application from Indrani Mukerjea in which she claimed that she was facing a threat to her life," said Deepak Deoraj, Deputy Commissioner of Police

Indrani MukerjeaIndrani Mukerjea/ file pic

After Indrani Mukerjea, the prime accused in the high-profile Sheena Bora murder case has expressed her apprehension on Wednesday, the city police have initiated a probe into a claim made by her. Indrani was earlier admitted to the state-run  J J Hospital for a treatment of a suspected drug overdose.

"We have received an application from Indrani Mukerjea in which she claimed that she was facing a threat to her life," said Deepak Deoraj, Deputy Commissioner of Police and spokesperson of the Mumbai Police.

Besides, Indrani had yesterday said that she was facing a threat to her life while she was being taken to the Byculla prison, said the officer. He said an appropriate action would be taken as per legal provisions once the inquiry into Indrani's claim is over.

Another senior officer said the police are yet to record Indrani's statement regarding her claim.

"As she (Indrani) is currently lodged in the Byculla Jail, we will have to secure the permission of the Prisons Department to record her statement," he said.

Meanwhile, Nagpada police station senior inspector Sanjay Basvat said the police were planning to record Indrani's statement today, but couldn't succeed.

"We couldn't record her statement after the Prison authorities told us that Indrani was unwell. Otherwise, our team was ready to visit the Byculla prison and record her statement," he said.

Responding to a reporter's query yesterday that whether she was facing a threat to her life, Indrani had replied in the affirmative, but was whisked away by the police personnel escorting her before she could say much. Meanwhile, Byculla prison authorities today submitted Indrani's medical report before a special CBI court hearing the murder case, which confirmed that she fell ill due to the overdose of a medicine.

A doctor attached to the Byculla Prison told the court that Indrani was still weak and cannot walk alone. He said Indrani would take at least six days to recover. Indrani, 46, was on April 6 admitted to the JJ hospital, where she was brought in a "semi-conscious" condition from her cell in Byculla Jail.

She subsequently underwent a series of medical tests. Her urine samples were sent for analysis at a forensic laboratory here and after receiving its report, the hospital authorities said she had an overdose of anti-depressants that were not prescribed to her.

Besides being the key accused in the murder case, Indrani, the co-founder of INX Media, was questioned by the CBI in the Byculla Jail last month as part of its probe into the INX media deal in which Congress leader P Chidambaram's son Karti had allegedly received kickbacks.

Karti was arrested by the CBI in February this year after a confessional statement was given by Indrani before a magistrate. Indrani is accused of killing her daughter Sheena Bora, 25, whose body was found dumped in a forest area in the neighbouring Raigad district in April 2012, according to the police.

Besides Indrani, her husband Peter Mukerjea, former husband Sanjeev Khanna, and driver Shyamvar Rai were arrested for their alleged roles in the crime. Rai later turned an approver (prosecution witness) in the case.

The special CBI court today couldn't record the statement of Kajal Sharma, former secretary of Indrani and the key witness in the case, as Indrani could not attend the court for health reasons.

Indrani told special CBI judge J C Jagadale through a video link from the jail that she wanted to remain present in the court during an examination of Sharma. The hearing of the case is adjourned till April 18.

Edited by mid-day online desk, with inputs from PTI

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