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CCTV shows Neha jumping from ship

delhi Updated: Mar 29, 2010 00:33 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
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An eight-page investigation report and the video CDs released by the Brevard County Sheriff's office, Texas (the US), has confirmed Neha Chhikara had jumped from the deck of the ship where her husband was a crewmember at 4.11 a.m. on January 1.

"The report states that the CCTV footage shows Neha on Deck 11 where she pulls out her sweater and socks and places these at the bench along with a suicide note, wallet and other belongings,” Neha's father Suresh Chhikara said.

“At 4.11am, she rides up the railing facing the ship with her back towards the sea, takes a moment and then jumps into the deep water with her head down under. Another footage of a CCTV installed at the lower side of the ship clearly shows her going down the water."

Neha, a former airhostess from Gurgaon, had gone missing in mysterious circumstances on December 31, 2009, onboard the Royal Caribbean's Monarch of the Seas cruise ship in the Bahamas region. Chhikara was sailing with her husband and crewmember Ankit Dalal on a five-night cruise.

Neha had married Ankit, the son of then chief medical officer (CMO) of Gurgaon Dr. S S Dalal, on October 5, 2008.

The Haryana State Vigilance Bureau (HSVB) investigating the mysterious death received the detailed report and the CDs from the Ministry of External Affairs on March 25.

Suresh Chhikara, a merchant navy executive who had filed a dowry death case against Ankit and his family on January 2, also received a copy of the report.

Gurgaon police had booked Ankit and his parents in a case of dowry harassment, criminal breach and assault but no arrests were made.

The Chhikaras had alleged the police had not taken action because the Dalals had 'very high' links with the top brass of the Haryana state police.

The case was later transferred to the Haryana State Vigilance Bureau after the Chhikaras met Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda.

S.S. Dalal said the authorities had taken the statement of his son and issued him a clean chit allowing him to leave on January 3.

He said, “These days he is not at home as he has resumed his job. He has been implicated in the case and he is innocent."

Dalal had earlier said his son and his family had no role in Neha’s death and that she had probably taken the extreme step under depression.

He had also said Neha was taking anti-depressants and just three to four months into the marriage she had attempted to commit suicide by slashing her wrist.