With new details tumbling out of the closet in the shocking Burari mass suicide case, the Delhi Police has now decided to conduct the psychological autopsy to ascertain the psyche of all the 11 members of a family who were found hanging inside their house under mysterious circumstances last week.
This is not for the first time that Delhi Police has opted for a psychological study of the deceased to solve a death case. The police have earlier conducted similar test in Sunanda Pushkar murder case. Psychological autopsy refers to mapping the psyche of the living family members and the mental health of the deceased.
Police are still awaiting the final postmortem report and the forensic report. They will also be sending the viscera of the bodies for forensic examination to ascertain whether the members were poisoned. The initial autopsy report had said that all 11 members had died of hanging and there were no signs of struggle or scuffle.
The baffling mass suicide case
Ten of the 11 members of the deceased family were found hanging from an iron-mesh in the ceiling on Sunday (June 1), while the body of 77-year-old Narayan Devi, the head of the family, was lying on the floor in another room of the house.
Devi's daughter Pratibha (57), her two sons Bhavnesh (50) and Lalit (45) were also among the deceased. Bhavnesh's wife Savita (48) and their three children - Maneka (23), Neetu (25), and Dhirendra, aged 15, too were found dead.
Lalit Bhatia's wife Tina (42) and their 15-year-old son Dushyant were also among those found dead. Pratibha's daughter Priyanka, who was engaged last month and would have married by the end of this year, was also found hanging.
Suicide to attain moksha?
On Wednesday, police had recovered CCTV footage that showed some members bringing stools and wires that were used for their hanging. They had also found 11 diaries which had 'psychological musings' and things about attaining 'road to God'.
Reports suggest that Lalit Bhatia had been claiming that his dead father has been 'visiting' him. The family maintained several registers/diaries which purportedly contained 'directions' from Lalit's father who died a few years ago. Entries in these diaries suggest that the family may have performed the mass suicide 'ritual' to attain 'moksha' 'nirvana' after being influenced by Lalit.
What is Psychological Autopsy
In suicide cases, the law enforcing agencies do consider psychological autopsy as the most effective tool for gathering information about the mental state of the person before his death. The psychological autopsy helps the agencies to get an answer as why a person has committed suicide by checking medical records, talking to friends and family, and analysing a person's state of mind prior to his/her death.
Here are the main reasons why a psychological autopsy might be conducted:
1. The main objective is to establish definitively that the person did die as the result of a suicide.
2. The psychological autopsy helps in gathering data for the purposes of suicide prevention or to better understand suicidal behavior.
3. The autopsy might be conducted in order to determine whether or not clinicians or practitioners are in any way at fault.
WATCH: How Delhi Police plans to crack Burari mass suicide case with psychological autopsy
(With inputs from PTI)