Day after 11 people were found dead under mysterious circumstances at their house in Delhi’s Burari, the post-mortem examination of six of them has revealed that there were no signs of a struggle.
A senior police officer said post-mortem had been conducted on six people, including two children aged 15, so far and they had not found any signs of strangulation or scuffle. The post-mortem on the other bodies was being carried out till last reports came in.
Police suspect the deaths were part of a suicide pact carried out in accordance with a religious practice, as handwritten notes found on the spot indicated. They have however not ruled out any foul play either.
Some of the notes said “one will not die” but attain something “great”, said the officer.
According to a police statement, the notes found “point towards observance of some definite spiritual/mystical practices by the whole family”.
The notes had “strong similarity with the manner in which the mouths, eyes etc of the deceased were tied and taped”, said the police.
Meanwhile, Naveen Batra, a relative of the Bhatia family, told reporters that the eyes of all 11 deceased will be donated to an eye bank so as to help others see. He said that the Bhatia family always wanted to help others because of which the relatives have taken this decision.
“First thing we did was to donate their eyes that could provide eyesight to 22 people, considering the family was religious and always wanted to help others. We gave approval letter yesterday,” Batra told reporters on Monday morning.
Ten of those dead were found hanging from an iron-mesh in the ceiling for ventilation, while the body of a 77-year-old woman was lying on the floor in another room of the house, police said.
All those found hanging had their eyes and mouth covered with cloth and taped. The elderly woman found dead on the floor was however not blindfolded.
The police said they were informed by a neighbour that six to seven members of a family had committed suicide. On reaching the spot, they found there were 11 of them.
The bodies will be handed over to the family for last rites this afternoon.
The deceased were identified as Narayan Devi (77), who was found dead on the floor, her daughter Pratibha (57), her two sons Bhavnesh (50) and Lalit Bhatia (45).
Bhavnesh’s wife Savita (48) and their three children – Meenu (23), Nidhi (25) and Dhruv (15) were among the deceased.
Lalit Bhatia’s wife Tina (42) and their 15-year-old son Shivam were also among those found dead along with Pratibha’s daughter Priyanka (33), who was engaged last month and supposed to get married this year end.
The police are yet to establish the sequence of the deaths; whether it was a mass suicide or murder-suicide.
(With agency inputs)