It’s a question that’s been on everybody’s lips since IAS officer DK Ravi was found hanging in his Bengaluru apartment 10 days ago: Was it a case of murder or suicide?
The Opposition says 35-year-old Ravi was killed because he took on the state’s building and sand lobbies while police and post-mortem reports indicate he killed himself for personal reasons.
Documents accessed by Hindustan Times now indicate Ravi may have taken his own life after he was rebuffed by a female colleague, who had known him for six years. The documents are a part of official records and procured with the help of sources in Bengaluru police.
Transcripts of WhatsApp messages Ravi sent on March 15 and 16--the day of his death--indicate he was in love with a married female IAS officer and committed suicide when his overtures went unanswered.
Ravi’s last message to her at 11.05am on the day of his death opens with, "Ley [Hey] Baby, I think this is the last message from me."
"My last wish is to see you and kiss you but that will not be satisfied. And hence I expect you to come as soon as you hear [about] my demise and look at me if possible hug me. Kiss me and pray to god Shiva to give me peace!!!" the message concludes. His family refused to comment on the messages.
The case ignited violent protests across the state with a united opposition demanding a central probe, saying Ravi was killed for raiding politically-connected builders. His family sat in protest outside the state assembly as thousands demonstrated against the government.
The IAS officer’s WhatsApp messages also indicate he did not decide to take his life on the spur of the moment.
"Today will be most notorious day where [I] will take some nasty decision. I hope you guide me properly, will wait up to 9pm for your call and invitation," says a message sent by Ravi at 4.25pm on March 15.
He followed it up with another at 5.20pm. "Don't call or try to talk or tell anybody about my love. If at all there is a next life, we will be together. I am quitting," it reads.
The woman officer replied at 7pm. "Don't be stupid, tell me clearly if you don't want me to talk to you, I will not call; what is these kind of stupidities."
She had earlier told investigating agencies she initially distanced herself because of a change in Ravi’s tone and language.
"I found it strange. At first I distanced myself but he was apologetic and requested we be the good friends that we have been. In the last few days, his behaviour was inconsistent. I informed my husband about this and we decided to ignore the guy," her statement says.
She added that he was restless after he was transferred to the commercial taxes department where he felt he did not have enough work.
"This whole incident has been very unfortunate. We lost a colleague, but it has also left me enraged. There could be many reasons why the person did what he did, if he did it, but it is sad what I, my husband and my family have to endure because of this," she said.
A post-mortem report last week strengthened the suicide theory when it found no signs of external injury. "Death is due to asphyxia as a result of hanging,” it said.