New Delhi: Congress MP Shashi Tharoor is likely to be questioned again next week in connection with his wife Sunanda Pushkar's mysterious death as police looks to join the pieces in the case.
Tharoor was questioned by police on January 19 for around four hours at the office of Anti Auto Theft Squad (AATS) in South Delhi's Vasant Vihar.
Sources today said the Special Investigation Team is likely to question the former Union minister again next week as they got very “little time” with him on January 19. They also said that as he was the “closest relative” of the deceased at the spot when she was found dead, he may be questioned several times as the SIT would want to ask him about the things which would arise during examination of other witnesses and people concerned.
Speaking to reporters on Friday, Delhi Police Commissioner B S Bassi had also indicated Tharoor can be questioned in this connection again in “some days”.
“Whatever we had spoken to him during the first questioning is being analysed and if we need further questioning, it will be done. Since it is a very involved case, there would be a need to talk to him again, so the SIT will call him again in some days,” he had said. 52-year-old Sunanda was found dead in a room in the hotel on January 17 last year. Delhi Police filed a case of murder in the case on January 1 and an SIT was formed to probe the case.
Since then, police has questioned a number of people in this connection including domestic aides of Tharoor, staff of the hotel where Sunanda was found dead, family friend Sanjay Dewan and the hotel doctor who pronounced her dead.
Recently, it has also questioned several journalists in this regard with whom Sunanda had spoken a day before her death to find out whether she had mentioned to them about the IPL controversy, her husband Tharoor's alleged relations with Pakistani journalist Mehr Tarar or about any plans of hers to hold a press conference.
Journalist Nalini Singh had on Friday told the SIT that she had spoken to Sunanda about taking the blame for her husband in the IPL controversy following which police decided to rope in the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) to examine the business model of the erstwhile IPL Kochi franchise and to understand the controversy surrounding it. The investigators are now examining whether the IPL controversy had anything to do with Sunanda's death. Asked about the issue, Commissioner Bassi said that if needed, the SIT will examine financial transactions of the IPL franchise.
“There are a number of things. It can be background and it can be motive also. If we need to see any financial transaction to understand that, if we need to see the company formation and financial background, then we will look into it,” he said.
The IPL controversy had broken out in early 2010 when Tharoor was Minister of State for External Affairs. There were allegations that he had “misused” his office to ensure that Rs 70 crore, which was equivalent to 19 per cent equity in IPL Kochi franchise Rendezvous Sports, was paid to Sunanda. Sunanda, who was then a friend and yet to become Tharoor's wife, had refuted allegations of any wrongdoing. She had also denied that she was acting as the front for Tharoor in the Kochi IPL franchise.
Later, she quit Rendezvous Sports World after deciding to return her free equity worth Rs 70 crore to the franchise.