Charudatta Deshpande suicide: Tata Steel official named in FIR | india | Hindustan Times
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Charudatta Deshpande suicide: Tata Steel official named in FIR

The Vasai police, on Monday, registered a case of abetment to suicide against a Tata Steel official based at the company's Jamshedpur unit.

india Updated: Nov 20, 2013 01:01 IST
HT Correspondent

The Vasai police, on Monday, registered a case of abetment to suicide against a Tata Steel official based at the company's Jamshedpur unit.

Prabhat Sharma, the corporate affairs head of Tata Steel, has been booked for abetting the suicide of Charudutta Deshpande, former head of corporate affairs and communications with Tata Steel. Deshpande had committed suicide at his Vasai home on June 28. No suicide note was found.

Prashant Deshpande, deputy superintendent of police said, "A case was registered against Sharma with the Vasai police under IPC section 306 for abetment of suicide on Monday. Sharma, who works at Tata Steel's Jamshedpur unit, had been harassing the deceased that led him to end his life. No arrests have been made in the case so far."

“Tata Steel is aware of the FIR filed by the Vasai Police in the matter relating to the unfortunate demise of its former employee, Mr Charudatta Deshpande. The company has been fully and openly cooperating with the investigation, and will continue to assist the legal process. The Internal Enquiry Committee has submitted its report to the Board,” said a Tata Steel spokesperson.

Responding to apprehensions that the former journalist’s suicide on June 28 could be the result of harassment by some officials of Tata Steel, from where he had resigned a month earlier, home minister RR Patil on July 11, had announced a crime branch probe into the incident.

A joint team of the Mumbai crime branch and the Thane rural police left for Jamshedpur on July 21 to investigate allegations made by Charudutta's friends amd colleagues. The team found that Charudutta was mentally tortured during his tenure with Tata Steel that pushed him to end his life.

Officials found that Sharma worked as Charudutta's deputy at Jamshedpur and Charudutta had written in his diary that Sharma was responsible for the harassment he was facing at work.

"Charudutta had written that Sharma had his vested interests and was indulging in office politics that had made Charudutta's time at the company difficult. He had mentioned words like 'harassment' and 'pressure' in the diary," said a senior crime branch official who did not wish to be named.

Officials also found that Charudutta had been tortured as his probation period was extended by six months despite the senior post he was working at with the company. Besides, he was not given the travel facilities that are usually granted to officers with such seniority.

"We verified the handwriting in the diary with experts and it was confirmed that the writing was Charudutta's. We then sought legal opinion and experts said that a case was made out against Sharma after which he was booked," said the official.