Asthana family fears for life, wants extra cover | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Asthana family fears for life, wants extra cover

A day after the death of Ashutosh Asthana who was the prime accused in the Ghaziabad provident fund scam, his family has expressed concerns over their security, reports Peeyush Khandelwal.

delhi Updated: Oct 19, 2009 23:11 IST
Peeyush Khandelwal

A day after the death of Ashutosh Asthana who was the prime accused in the Ghaziabad provident fund scam, his family has expressed concerns over their security.

“We are worried about the security of our family members and his three children who are still studying,” said Sirish Asthana, younger brother of Asthana.

He said they have asked Dasna jail authorities to provide extra security to them inside jail premises. "We have requested for additional security for my sister-in-law Sushma Asthana and other family members who are presently lodged in jail," said Sirish Asthana.

Sushma Asthana is the wife of the main accused who died on Saturday under mysterious conditions. The post mortem conducted by a panel of five specialist doctors could not conclude the exact reason of his death.

Sushma Asthana had expressed her security concerns on Sunday during her husband's funeral at Hindon.

The post mortem report — accessed by HT on Monday — says his vital organs like kidney, lungs, liver and spleen were in a "congested" state.

Ashutosh Asthana (47) was key accused in the scam in which Rs 7 crore was illegally acquired from provident fund accounts. He had alleged involvement of several judges in his statements at the Ghaziabad court.

The Central Bureau of Investigation is probing the case.

"We would soon be sending the viscera to the Agra laboratory for chemical analysis," said V.K. Singh, the Dasna Jail superintendent.

Sirish Asthana who works with a private firm is looking after the three children of the accused.

Dasna Jail superintendent V.K. Singh the fears expressed by the family were being looked into and medical attention was being given to his wife.

“An inquiry by IG (Prison) is underway into Asthana’s death and district administration has also initiated an inquiry into the matter,” Singh told HT.

More worries in store

The other accused in the case who are out on bail have also expressed fear. The accused, which include several women, have expressed shock at Asthana's death and said the same fate could be meted out to them as Asthana had named several influential people in his statements.

"Who do we approach for our security, as we are also accused in a case, in which we unknowingly became a part? We never knew the case would involve such high-profile people," said an accused requesting anonymity. “Our business has been ruined and our money has gone waste.”