The Uttarakhand government on Wednesday asked for a CBI probe into the death of Swami Nigamanand even as fellow-travellers of the deceased did not budge from their original belief that he had been poisoned.
A state government spokesperson confirmed the development regarding the CBI probe.
Earlier in the day, Uttarakhand governor Margaret Alva asked for an “independent probe” into the death of the swami. A Raj Bhawan note said the governor wanted this to ascertain the "situation" behind the swami’s “mysterious death”.
“We have no objection to a high-level probe. Even the viscera of Swami Nigamanand could be sent for examination to any lab other than those in Lucknow or Agra if Matri Sadan (a hermitage of swamis) or the kin (of Nigamanand) desire,” said Madan Kaushik, cabinet minister and MLA from Haridwar.
Matri Sadan said Swami Nigamanand would be laid to rest (“earth burial”) on Thursday. Several swamis visited Matri Sadan and paid tributes to Nigamanand. “He died for the cause of the Ganga, and his martyrdom will not go waste,” said Swami Govindacharya.
Meanwhile, Swami Shivanand, the founder of Matri Sadan, repeated his allegation that Nigamanand had been poisoned. But the autopsy report had denied this.
However, Matri Sadan said when the swami had been forcibly admitted to hospital in April, a pathological test done by Dr. Lal Pathlabs (in New Delhi) showed traces of toxicity in his body.
District magistrate R Meenakshi Sundaram said till the viscera report came from Lucknow, what a private lab said could not be considered as genuine. While Swami Nigamanand’s parents are on their way to Haridwar, his brother, a software engineer, and cousin met the district magistrate on Wednesday and asked for his body.