THE FATHER of PhD student Neha Sharma, who was found dead with multiple wounds in a laboratory of Agra’s Dayal Bagh Educational Institute in March 2013, on Tuesday claimed he was being pressured to stop pursuing the matter. Following the alleged threats, the family has shifted to Delhi from Agra.
Neha, a 23-year-old researcher, was found dead in the laboratory with 12 deep cuts, inflicted with a paper cutter and a surgical blade, on March 15, 2013. Uday Swaroop, the grandson of retired IAS officer Prem Kumar and president of Dayalbagh Satsang Sabha that runs the institute, is the prime accused in the case.
“We are regularly being pressured by unknown persons to withdraw the case. We have no information about these people… they have met me on the road and at the court. Following threats, I have shifted my wife and two children to Delhi,” said Richpal Sharma, who works in a private firm in Delhi.
Sharma had last visited Agra on May 17, when the local court had taken up Neha’s case. “In a written application to the Agra Police, I had stated that if any untoward incident happened to me or my family, the accused and his family should be held responsible… I have also lodged a complaint with the CBI investigating officer,” he said.
While Sharma claimed he has a copy of his complaint lodged in New Agra police station, Station Officer Nitin Kasana said he was not aware of this.
Days after Neha’s murder, Agra Police had arrested Uday Swaroop (21), a final-year BSc student at the institute, and his friend, Yashveer Singh Sandhu (35) — a lab technician — accusing them of attempt to rape and murder. Police went on to file a chargesheet against Swaroop and Sandhu in June, 2013.
In August, 2013, CBI took over the investigations. In January, 2016, it filed a supplementary chargesheet against Swaroop on charges of murder, rape and destruction of evidence. Following this, Swaroop — who was out on bail since February 2014 — was again arrested and sent to Agra District Jail on May 12, this year. On Tuesday, the Agra court rejected Swaroop’s bail application, as he has now been charged with rape and destruction of evidence.
Sandhu, meanwhile, is out on bail since February, 2014.