A police constable posted outside the American consulate at Bhulabhai Desai road in Gamdevi lost his life after two bullets from his service weapon punctured his skull on Monday morning.
The Gamdevi police station is yet to ascertain if 22-year-old Deepak Vitkare committed suicide or his service weapon, a 9mm sub-machine carbine fired accidentally.
Vitkare had reported to duty on Sunday evening, around 8.30pm along with another police constable B Dhule. They were to be relieved at 8.30am on Monday morning.
"Around 7.30am, when Dhule went to the toilet, he heard two gunshots," said deputy commissioner of police (zone II), Anil Kumbhare.
Dhule and others present at the consulate rushed out on hearing the gunshot, and found Vitkare lying in a pool of blood. "Two bullets were fired from his service carbine. The bullets entered his chin and left through his forehead," said Kumbhare.
Vitkare was rushed to Breach Candy hospital where he was declared dead. His body was taken to JJ hospital for a post mortem. His family has been informed about the incident, and his father and two younger brothers are coming to the city to claim his body, said police officials.
Vitkare, a native of Solapur district, was posted with the Local Arms Unit II at Tardeo for the last three years after being recruited to the force in 2008. He was to be married in two months, said his fellow constable friends. Police sources said that the bridge block of the 9mm carbines has been a bone of contention for a long time because there have been instances where the carbine fires without even being triggered.
'Deepak was not under any pressure'
Relatives and friends of 22-year-old police constable Deepak Vitkare, who died of bullet wounds outside the American consulate at Gamdevi on Monday, rubbished the theory that he had committed suicide.
Srikant Irkal, a maternal cousin of Vitkare who is also in the police force said, "Deepak was to get married two months later. He did not seem to be under any sort of pressure. I can think of no reason that would push him to take his own life. His carbine must have fired accidentally, which must have resulted in his death."
Deepak's family, which comprised of his father and two younger brothers, was dependant on him. Nandkumar Vitkare, Deepak's father lost his eyesight a few years back and his mother passed away around ten years back.
"Deepak had a lot of responsibility on his shoulders. Why would he commit suicide? Also, he was to get married in a few months," said another colleague of Vitkare, who did not wish to be identified.
Raju Choughule, a cousin of Deepak who lives in Mumbai said, "We told his brothers that he met with an accident." The Vitkare family will take Deepak's body to Solapur where the final rites will be performed.