LARKANA: Sindh Taraqqi-pasand Party chairman Dr Qadir Magsi sits at a camp set up outside Jinnahbagh on Monday to seek justice in the Nimrita death case.—PPI
LARKANA: Sindh Taraqqi-pasand Party chairman Dr Qadir Magsi sits at a camp set up outside Jinnahbagh on Monday to seek justice in the Nimrita death case.—PPI

HYDERABAD: The rece­ntly released final post-mortem report of Nimrita Chan­dani to ascertain facts about her mysterious death has perhaps raised more questions than it answered. A debate on whether it was a suicide or murder has refused to die down even after release of the report prepared by medico-legal officer Dr Amrita on Nov 6.

Nimrita Chandani was a final-year BDS student of the Bibi Aseefa Dental College in Larkana. She was found dead in her hostel room on Sept 16. Police declared it a suicide case but her family insists that she was murdered.

The MLO was said to have been called by the Larkana district and sessions judge, who is holding a judicial inquiry into case, and was asked various questions in view of her provisional and final post-mortem reports.

Dr Amrita was said to have been confronted with her Sept 17 provisional and Nov 6 final post-mortem reports in the backdrop of the use of words ‘strangulation’, ‘hanging’, ‘ligature material’ and ‘sexual act’ (on the basis of DNA profiling report).

The judge is likely to complete the probe by next week. Her Nov 6 report has created a strong impression that Nimrita was murdered after having been subjected to sexual assault.

In her second and final post-mortem report of Nov 6, she has mentioned “indication of sexual act” in the wake of DNA profiling report of Liaquat University of Medical and Health Sciences’ Forensic and Molecular Biology Laboratory for DNA Testing.

“She [MLO] was required to determine cause of death whether it was suicide or murder. But she travelled into another debate, though unnecessarily, as she didn’t comment whether “sexual act” was by consent or it was forceful”, added a source while discussing medico-legal nature of her case on condition of anonymity.

DNA laboratory source of LUMHS said that MLO only sent them ‘swab and clothes and nothing else. The MLO should have sent “nails” of deceased which played a key role in medico-legal examination, he said.

“Larkana police need to find out the third person who, according to DNA profiling report, met her before her death as DNA of two suspects in custody did not match with male DNA”, argued Punhal Sario who led a token hunger strike observed recently by civil society activists outside local press club to raise a voice for justice in the case.

“The Larkana DIG and SSP are supposed to be competent officers; why are they reluctant to lay hands on culprit is anybody’s guess,” he remarked, and questioned: “Is this third person so powerful to be [unable to be] brought to justice?”

He added that Nimrita’s family during her last rites found marks of bruises on her body and this was disclosed by Dr Vishaal, her brother. He said why pro-chancellor of Sindh universities Nisar Khuhro jumped to “suicide’ narrative” was also not understandable, when even an investigation into the case had not been started.

The bereaved family, meanwhile, has still remained silent. They have not yet come forward to lodge an FIR. The two suspects have been in police custody for close to two months. They have already been produced before a sessions judge but have not been booked so far.

According to another report shared by an official wishing to remain anonymous, the report of the inquiry committee formed by the Shaheed Mohtarma Benazir Bhutto Medical University (SMBBMU) administration suggested that “it was suicide”. This report has been submitted to the Larkana sessions judge.

Published in Dawn, November 12th, 2019