The senior doctor from AIIMS, New Delhi, who led the medical board to conduct a post-mortem in 2015 of skeletal remains, allegedly of Sheena Bora, told the court that he had not made any notes of measurements of bones due to which his work could not be “objectively verified”.
“I was duty-bound to measure bones and prepare data for a conclusion. Whatever measurements I took and the data collected is not part of the record. It is correct to say due to absence of data, the findings arrived at by me cannot be objectively verified,” Dr Sudhir Kumar Gupta said on Monday, while he was being cross-examined by Shrikant Shivade, lawyer representing accused Peter Mukerjea.
He, however, denied the suggestion that his opinion in the case, including on age, sex and cause of death, as being “false”.
Gupta, the 61st witness to depose in the case, had earlier told the court that according to his analysis, the cause of death of was asphyxia, as a result of which strangulation could not be ruled out. He had, however, also said the presence of strangulation injuries could not be confirmed only on the basis of an examination of the skeletal remains.
CBI claims that on April 24, 2012, Bora was administered a sedative, strangulated in a car and her body was buried in Raigad by her mother, accused Indrani Mukerjea, with her ex-husband Sanjeev Khanna, in a conspiracy with Peter.
On Monday, Gupta also told the court he had relied on a report submitted by forensic experts at BYL Nair Hospital, finding it to be reliable and, hence, the same was reiterated with “little modifications” by adding more points. The Nair hospital report had said the cause of death could not be determined.
The defence lawyer for Peter also questioned Gupta on an alleged inquiry against him on allegations of plagiarism by a colleague at AIIMS. The defence said a committee had upheld those allegations.
“I am not aware as to whether the ethics committee expressed great concern about the state of affairs at AIIMS. I was not communicated that such a practice should be discouraged by making exemplary punishment,” Gupta said. He also said in 25 years of service, he had neither faced any allegation nor were there directions to erase his name from the Indian Medical Register temporarily for a year. He added that the defence was trying to “demean” him.
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