"Sudarshan Padmanabhan is the cause of my death,” is what IIT Madras student Fathima Latheef had to to say before she committed suicide inside her hostel room on November 9. Four days after her suicide, her family accused a professor of insulting her in the name of her religion. Fathima's father Abdul Latheef has appealed Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan to ensure a fair probe into his daughter's death alleging that she was facing constant harassment over her faith. Soon after the Fathima's suicide note came to public domain, a student organisation of People Front of India, Campus Front of India (CFI), conducted a protest outside the gates of IIT Madras, demanding justice for Fathima.
In the detailed note recovered from her phone, Fatima had also named two more faculty members, Hemachandran and Brahme. She wrote, "In the case of my death. This should be considered as my last non nuncupative statement. "I never realised that I would miss my home so much. I abhor this place. How I yearn for my home, to be suspended in that delicious inertia like an interminable sleep from which I can never be roused. In that case of my death the wjole of blame will be unremittingly upon Mr. Hemachandran Karah and Mr.. Brahme."
Fathima, a first year masters student in Humanities and Development Studies in IIT-M, had last spoken to her mother on November 8 when she told her that she would be switching off her phone to prepare for semester examinations. When her phone continued to be switched off her mother to contact her friends, which too went unanswered. The family later received a call from the hostel warden who informed them of Fathima's death.
Fathima's parents also alleged that several hostel staff had seen her profusely crying in the cafeteria on the day she ended her life.
Meanwhile, Chennai Police Commissioner AK Viswanathan said case has been transferred to Central Crime Branch for investigation.
"A team will be formed which will be headed by Additional Commissioner and few senior officers to give a better focus and attention considering the sensitivity of the case," Viswanathan said.
Reportedly, Twenty-five people, including three professors, have been questioned so far and the police have moved court to seek permission to send Fathima's mobile to the cyber crime team to examine the suicide note.
Hailing from Kollam in Kerala, Fathima was a bright student. Fathima's case is the fifth suicide at IIT-M in the last one year.