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Sunanda Pushkar death mystery: FBI report rules out radioactive poisoning

New Delhi: Sunanda Pushkar, wife of Congress leader Shashi Tharoor, did not die of radioactive poisoning, a report by Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has concluded.The FBI lab reports of Sunanda Pushkar's viscera sample ruled

India TV News Desk [ Updated: November 11, 2015 14:09 IST ]
sunanda pushkar death mystery fbi report rules out
sunanda pushkar death mystery fbi report rules out radioactive poisoning

New Delhi: Sunanda Pushkar, wife of Congress leader Shashi Tharoor, did not die of radioactive poisoning, a report by Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has concluded.

The FBI lab reports of Sunanda Pushkar's viscera sample ruled out death by polonium or any other radioactive substance. The viscera samples were sent to US after AIIMS doctors had said that Indian labs lacked facility to identify the poison which caused her death.

The samples were sent to the FBI lab in Washington in February to determine the kind of poison that killed her after an AIIMS medical board identified poisoning as the reason behind her death but did not mention any specific name.

Radiation levels in Sunanda Pushkar's viscera samples were "within the standard safety norms", Delhi Police said today as they shared the findings of an FBI report that virtually rules out the theory of 'polonium poisoning' causing her death.

Reacting to the developments, AIIMS forensic head Sudhir Gupta stuck to his opinion that poisoning was the cause of death.

However, he added that the "domain is much more large" when specifically asked whether Polonium-210, a radioactive isotope, had caused the death.

"There are findings that confirm that the death was due to poisoning. We concluded by eliminating the other causes of her death," Gupta said.

Delhi top cop BS Bassi said that the report from the Washington D.C.-based laboratory would soon be handed to a medical board for it to be examined before further action is taken on the high-profile case.

"I understand that the report has been received. The FBI lab had conducted analysis of various substances. And this should give an indication (as to the reason behind her death) once the doctors go through the report," Bassi told reporters.

Asked about the radiation levels in the samples, the Delhi Police Commissioner said that it was "within the standard safety norms". He added that the findings would have to be "correlated with the post-mortem report".

The wife of former Union minister Shashi Tharoor Sunanda Pushkar, 51, was found dead at a five star hotel in Delhi in January 2014. For a year, her death was considered a case of suicide, but earlier this year the Delhi Police claimed that she was poisoned and registered a murder case against unknown persons.

Police suspected that she was poisoned though no trace of poisoned was found in her body.

The police did not name any suspects but it conducted polygraph tests on six people, all listed as prime witnesses. The list includes Narain Singh, Tharoor's domestic help, driver Bajrangi and family friend Sanjay Dewan. Police also question Thiruvananthapuram MP Shashi Tharoor multiple times in relation with the high profile case.

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