Doctor who headed Sunanda autopsy team moves CAT against removal order

He has alleged bias against him for “not bowing” to pressure from top officials.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: July 2, 2014 2:51:34 am

The doctor, who headed the panel that conducted the post mortem on Congress MP Shashi Tharoor’s wife Sunanda Pushkar at AIIMS, has filed an affidavit before Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT), contesting an order to remove him from the post of head of forensic medicine. He has alleged bias against him for “not bowing” to pressure from “top officials of the institute and then senior Congress ministers” while making Pushkar’s post mortem report

Dr Gupta told The Indian Express, “Three days before the Congress government fell, there was an order to appoint another HoD in my department which was submitted before the institute body, and I went to CAT against this order. Later I mentioned before the body that this order was passed because of bias against me since I did not succumb to the enormous pressures from top officials and politicians to manipulate the contents of Sunanda Pushkar’s report.”

“I have stated before CAT that I did not bow before these pressures and still submitted the correct report within two days,” he said.
Dr Gupta said CAT had given a stay on the appointment of a new head in the forensic medicine department. A vigilance case has also since been filed against Dr Gupta, which is being handled by the AIIMS vigilance officer.

The autopsy report had identified the cause of death as “poisoning” and found over a dozen injury marks in her upper body — on one arm, hand, chin, and neck regions — and interpreted them as “scuffle marks”. The viscera samples that were sent or toxicology and histopathology analysis at CFSL reportedly did not find any “conclusive evidence”. Dr Gupta had said immediately after conducting the post mortem that Pushkar’s death was sudden, and unnatural, and that her “cardiac death” was “not from any natural causes or pre-existing disease”.

Asked about the number of injuries, Dr Gupta had then said, “In medico-legal cases, the number of injuries does not matter. Whether these injuries are related with the fatality or not, that matters. Before giving any opinion, I have to see laboratory reports of toxicology and histopathology.”

On Tuesday he told The Indian Express, “I still stand by the report I submitted, it was the correct report in spite of the pressures put on me.”

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