An internal inquiry by the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) into the death of first-year student Khushboo Choudhary, found hanging in her hostel room on Sunday, has ruled out foul play but her family has sought a thorough investigation.
The family of the 17-year-old wants Delhi Police to conduct a detailed probe. “We demand the CCTV footage of the hostel and her call details record,” her father told Hindustan Times.
Choudhary was a resident of Bikaner in Rajasthan and had joined the premier institute just a month ago. She stood 24th in the all-India entrance test for the institute.
An investigating officer said, “Khushboo was alone in the room because her roommate had gone on leave for Rakshabandan. There are no external injury marks on the body of the deceased and so post mortem report will help us with the exact cause of death. We checked the whole room but did not find a suicide note.”
AIIMS spokesperson Amit Gupta said an internal inquiry had ruled out foul play or ragging. Choudhary’s family was informed about the incident on Sunday morning and an autopsy could be conducted only on Monday after the family arrives in Delhi and gives permission, he said.
Choudhary’s friends told police she seemed happy on Saturday evening and had gone out shopping with friends to the nearby Sarojini Nagar area. Choudhary and her friends returned to the hostel at around 11pm.
Around midnight, Choudhary received a call on her cell phone after which she was disturbed, one of her friends told police.
She reportedly spoke on the phone for about 10 to 15 minutes outside the room and was later spotted texting. After the call, she asked everyone to go to their rooms, saying wanted to be left alone as she was tired.
One of her friends, who had reportedly left her mobile phone to charge in Choudhary’s room, went back to get it at 2.25am and found her hanging from the fan. The friend immediately alerted others and the authorities. Choudhary was rushed to the emergency room at AIIMS, where she was declared dead on arrival.
Police were then informed of the incident. They seized Choudhary’s mobile phone and are scanning it for more information. They also confirmed that phone records showed she spoke to two friends at around midnight.
"The bright and cheerful girl"
Dreams came crashing down for the Choudhary family after the news of the suicide broke.
After Choudhary got a seat in AIIMS, her cousin Abhijeet Beniwal, also a student of the premier medical institute, wrote on Facebook, “Looks like we are here till 2020”.
Beniwal belongs to the 2010 undergraduate batch at AIIMS and is now in the final year.
At 5am on Sunday, Choudhary’s father was informed about the suicide.
“First they said she had fallen off the stairs, but while we were on our way to Delhi, we learnt that she was no more,” said Bhagirath Bhambu, Choudhary’s uncle.
“She was in touch with us till late Saturday evening; it was the first time that she couldn’t celebrate Rakshabandhan,” he said.
Choudhary’s teachers in Bikaner remember her as a bright and cheerful girl.
“It’s difficult to even imagine that a girl like her can commit suicide,” said Ajay Mohan, who coached her for the AIIMS entrance test.
(With inputs from Rakesh Goswami in Jaipur)