A Delhi Court on Tuesday heard the submissions made before Special Judge Geetanjali Goel by Senior Advocate Vikas Pahwa, appearing on behalf of Congress MP Dr. Shashi Tharoor, an accused in the Sunanda Pushkar death case. As reported by Indian Express, Pahwa in this hearing read aloud Sunanda Pushkar’s son, Shiv Menon’s statement to the police who stated that he believes Tharoor cannot hurt even a fly.
The detailed statement by her son revealed Sunanda’s equation with Tharoor, her medical condition, and the change of statement by the doctor who conducted the postmortem.
Quoting Shiv Menon’s statement, Vikas Pahwa read: “In the mortuary I asked about the cause of death to the doctor who conducted the postmortem. He told me that there is no poisoning… there is no foul play. It may have been due to sleeplessness, hunger, excessive smoking and stress. But just after 15-20 minutes the same doctor… went into the media and reported the cause of death is due to poisoning or unnatural causes. In my strong belief Shashi cannot even harm a fly. He could not even think of harming her…Unfortunately at the end of her life, she was a bit unstable due to her mental state but I would just like to conclude that Shashi could not have murdered her….”
In the last hearing, Vikas Pahwa argued that there was no conclusive proof suggesting the real cause of death and hence he rested his arguments today on individual facts like medications that Sunanda Pushkar was on and statements of ten members close to the deceased, to prove no allegations were levelled against Tharoor by friends and family.
After reading out a list of medications that Sunanda Pushkar was on, the Senior Advocate quoted her son’s statement which was given by him to the police: “I informed her that it is an antidepressant and not a sleeping pill… she has been taking it for many years… While she leaving for India she hugged me… she told me that I have a bad feeling that I am not going to see you again. She always used to speak that she is ill and will die at a very short time. … my mother was very emotional. Every time when she came to India she was found in an aggressive mood. She used to become angry over small things and short tempered. I tried to pacify her, Shashi is a busy man and loves her very much… there was a lack of communication between them (sic).”
To substantiate his argument, Vikas Pahwa revealed that according to some of the family members, Tharoor took Sunanda Pushkar to the doctors in India as well as while they were in France considering her medical condition.
Based on Shiv Menon’s statement, Pahwa argued that “The only son of the deceased clearly said that Tharoor had nothing to do with the death but my friend (Prosecutor) wants to frame charges on him.”
After listening to the arguments at length, the matter has been listed for 26th March 2021 at 2PM for further arguments.
Sunanda Pushkar death case
Sunanda Pushkar, the wife of Congress party leader Shashi Tharoor was found dead under mysterious conditions in her suite at Delhi’s Leela Hotel on January 17, 2014.
On January 16, 2014, Sunanda Pushkar had a spat on Twitter with Pakistani journalist Mehr Tarar after rumours of the latter having affair with Shashi Tharoor went abuzz. Sunanda also accused Mehr of being an ISI agent and of stalking her, however, Mehr refuted these allegations, calling them ‘absurd’. Hours later these tweets were deleted from Sunanda Pushkar’s timeline. The following day, Pushkar was found dead in suite number 345 of Delhi’s Leela Hotel.
The case was then handed over to the Delhi police after the postmortem reports revealed that Sunanda had 12 injury marks on her body and nominal traces of anti-anxiety drug Alprazolam were found in her stomach resulting in an unnatural death.
On May 15, 2018, the Delhi Police charged Congress MP Shashi Tharoor with abetting the suicide of his wife and accused Tharoor of subjecting Pushkar to cruelty in a 3000-page charge sheet.