A MAN killed himself at the Lalta Devi Temple in Neemsar, a major pilgrimage centre of the State, here on Wednesday morning.
Nathu Ram Pal, 40, laid down his life as an offering to the goddess on the occasion of Amavasya around 6.30 am, his brother Guddu said. However, the police cast doubt on the sacrifice version and said it appeared to be a case of suicide.
The incident took place near the ‘havankund’. The temple was full of devotees when Nathu Ram slit his throat with a knife. He died on the spot. He was taken to the Misrikh Community Health Centre, where his body lay from 8.30 am to 2.30 am. The body was later sent for a post-mortem examination to the Sitapur district hospital.
His brother Guddu said Nathu Ram had pledged to offer his life to the deity a year ago if his prayers were answered. Once it became apparent that his wish had been fulfilled, Nathu Ram was depressed at the prospect of having to lay down his life, his brother said. As a result, he took little food in the last two months. Guddu, however, said he did not know what his brother had sought from the deity.
Nathu Ram, resident of Khadri village in Misrikh, reached Neemsar in the early hours of Wednesday. He took a dip in the Chakar pond, considered holy by devotees, before entering the temple premises and taking his life.