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Negative DNA tests deepen mystery

The city railway police will reinvestigate the missing complaint of Meghna Subhedar after the DNA profiling of a body found at a beach in Goa on June 25 failed to match with that of her parents.

india Updated: Aug 16, 2008 00:46 IST
Debasish Panigrahi

The city railway police will reinvestigate the missing complaint of Bangalore-based software engineer Meghna Subhedar after the DNA profiling of a body found at a beach in Goa on June 25 failed to match with that of her parents.

The 28-year-old went missing when she was on her way to Chhattisgarh on Gitanjali Express on April 11, the complaint lodged by Meghna’s father, Mohan Subhedar, a medical practitioner from Korba in Chhattisgarh, with the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) railway police on April 14, said.

She had boarded the train from CST, the complaint said.

“Following the recovery of a body from Goa’s Candolim beach by the local police, the investigation into the missing complaint had been put on hold as the body was suspected to be that of Meghna’s,” Assistant Commissioner of Police, CST Division, Bapu Thomre said.

“However, with the DNA reports coming negative, we have to presume that she is still alive, and we will once again start searching for her,” he added.

The CST police will send a team to Calangute for a detailed report of the investigation done by the Goa police, he said.

The Calangute police had questioned several of Meghna’s colleagues — in the software firm at Bangalore and another firm
in Pune, where she earlier worked — to get leads.

Besides, several locals in Goa, including a labour contractor who was found in possession of her mobile phone, were also questioned.

These reports would be useful in the case, Thomre said. “If the need arises, we will send teams to Bangalore and Pune.”

He, however, said it was not clear if Meghna had boarded the train from CST. “No material, technical or circumstantial evidence found so far has supported his (Meghna’s father’s) claim.”

The train ticket list, mobile phone records and CCTV grabs of the platform on that day (April 11) had failed to prove her presence at the railway station, he said.

The railway police will, however, ask the Goa police to seek a second opinion on the DNA profiling findings. “This is because the body found on the beach had several descriptions that matched with Meghna,” Thomre said.