HOURS BEFORE he was scheduled to give his statement to police in connection with a murder case, a forester allegedly committed suicide by shooting himself in the chin, inside his quarters at Jasadhar range office in Gir East forest division near Una town of Gir Somnath district on Monday.
Gir Gadhda police said that Sanjay Beladiya, the forest guard, committed suicide by shooting himself in the chin from his 12 bore service rifle at around 8 AM. He took the extreme step inside his official residential quarters on the Jasadhar range office compound, police further said.
“Beladiya died on the spot as the bullet pierced his head. We have recovered a suicide note from his quarters and further investigation is on. As of now, we do not know the cause of his suicide,” Gir Gadhda police sub-inspector (PSI) Madhubhai Vala said.
The guard allegedly took his own life hours before he was scheduled to report at Una police station. The Una police had summoned in him at 10 AM on Monday for recording his statement in connection with alleged murder of Ashwin Vaza, a fruit trader of Una. Vaza was found dead on December 27 last year with police saying that he was murdered by someone by inflicting injuries by sharp-edged weapons.
“Call detail records suggested that Vaja’s wife Manisha was in touch with Beladiya after her husband was murdered. We suspect that Beladiya was her paramour. We had summoned him for primary questioning earlier. We had summoned him again at 10 AM on Monday for recording his further statement,” Raydhan Rathod, police inspector of Una told The Indian Express.
Incidentally, Manisha (23) had allegedly committed suicide by consuming poison at her father’s residence in Chikhal Kuba village of Gir Gadhda taluka around a week ago on January 26.
While police did not officially divulge contents of Beladiya’s 14-page suicide note, sources said that the guard had cited “harassment by PSI Zala” in connection with Vaza’s murder. Police officers confirmed that PSI RM Zala of Local Crime Brach (LCB) of Gir Somnath has been assisting in the probe of Vaza’s murder. Beladiya also claimed in the suicide note that he did not have illicit relationship with Manisha but did know her as she was daughter of a forester. He expressed his willingness to undergo any tests to confirm that he was not father of the yet-to-be-born baby of Manisha.
Gir Gadhda police have registered a case of accidental death and PSI Vala is investigating the case.
The forest guard rang up his two friends seconds before shooting himself and also sent messages in WhatsApp groups of forest employees.