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HindustanTimes Wed,20 Aug 2014

Sailor commits suicide on naval warship

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, January 06, 2013
First Published: 21:37 IST(6/1/2013) | Last Updated: 01:11 IST(7/1/2013)

A 23-year-old sailor allegedly committed suicide by shooting himself aboard a naval warship on Saturday evening.

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Demanding a thorough probe, family of the deceased, Mellwyn Raj, alleged that he took was forced to take extreme step due to harassment from seniors.

The police have recorded an accidental death and are conducting further inquiries into the case.

According to Colaba police, Raj, a native of Tamil Nadu, was recruited as a sailor two years ago. He was posted aboard the INS Talwar at the naval dockyard at Lion Gate and was on sentry duty on Saturday.

Around 8pm, Raj completed his duty and headed to the armoury room, where, as per protocol, he was supposed to deposit his rifle. However, he shot himself.

He was rushed to INS Ashwini, where he was declared dead before admission.

Selvam Ramakrishnan, 33, Raj’s cousin, said his brother was depressed as his seniors were harassing him.

Raj, according to Selvam, had told his parents on several occasions that his seniors treated him badly and had also complained that he was never granted leaves, unlike his colleagues.

“On Saturday, he was supposed to go home and had told his parents that his leave had been sanctioned. Suddenly, he was told that his leave was cancelled again. He had drafted a letter to be sent to the higher officials, where he had narrated how he had been harassed and had also named a few seniors,” alleged Selvam.

Meanwhile, his father, Devadas, 52, a businessman, said Raj always wanted to be in the Indian Navy.

“If he would have died in a war, I would have been proud. But the circumstances in which my son has died are dubious and the case should be thoroughly investigated,” he said.

“We have recorded an accidental report death. His colleague’s statements are being recorded and we will speak to his family next. However, the family’s allegations have to be corroborated with circumstantial evidence. We will continue investigations,” said R Shishve, zonal deputy commissioner of police.


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