Odisha’s ex-king’s staff, siblings commit suicide: Fourth sibling dies, CM Naveen Patnaik orders probe

Santosh Patra, alias Tulu, was found in critical condition with three of his deceased siblings in the family home at Paralakhemundi town of Odisha’s Gajapati district on Sunday afternoon.

Written by Debabrata Mohanty | Bhubaneswar | Updated: August 23, 2016 6:18:02 am

A DAY after police found the bodies of three siblings — two of them the personal staff of the erstwhile king of Paralakimedi — the fourth sibling died in hospital on Monday.

Santosh Patra, alias Tulu, was found in critical condition with three of his deceased siblings in the family home at Paralakhemundi town of Odisha’s Gajapati district on Sunday afternoon. The police believe he consumed poison.

Admitted at MKCG Medical College and Hospital in Berhampur on Sunday, Santosh died today. The death came as a blow to the police, who were trying to record Santosh’s statement — he was the only witness to the deaths.

On Sunday, the police recovered the bodies of siblings Ananga Manjari Patra, Sanjay Patra and Bijoylaxmi Patra from a house near the palace of former king and ex-MP Gajapati Narayan Deo in Paralakhemudi town. Ananga Manjari was the manager of Gajapati Narayan, 74, and her brother Sanjay a personal assistant. Bijaylaxmi was not part of the ex-royal personal staff.

The police suspect the siblings committed suicide following a hue and cry and complaint over their alleged role in the house arrest of Gajapati Narayan and financial misappropriation.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik ordered a probe by the state CID into the suicides. Odisha DGP K B Singh said, “Prima facie the deaths appear to be cases of suicide. A six-member special team by the CID has been formed to probe the case.”

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