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Mystery shrouds Gujranwala deputy commissioner’s death – Pakistan

GUJRANWALA: Deputy Commissioner Sohail Ahmed Tipu was found dead under mysterious circumstances at his official residence here on Thursday.

The police said the deceased’s body was hanging from the ceiling fan of his bedroom and his hands were tied behind his back.

While authorities declined to comment whether it was a suicide or murder, the Civil Lines police registered a murder case against unidentified suspects on the report of Akram Tahir, a maternal uncle of the deceased.

Authorities not sure whether its suicide or murder

“We found the body hanging from a fan when we reached the DC house upon the commissioner’s request,” Additional Medical Superintendent (AMS) Dr Gulzar said, according to Geo News.

Tipu’s tied hands indicated that he might not have attempted to take his own life, Dr Gulzar stated, adding that it seemed like a rope or wire was twisted twice around his neck (to suffocate him).

The samples collected from the body were forwarded to the laboratory and a final verdict on the cause of death would be given after the forensic lab would issue its report. The post-mortem was conducted, considering the possibilities of suicide, murder, and poisoning, said Dr Gulzar.

He added that he had given his legal opinion on the postmortem.

The DC House was guarded by five policemen when the incident happened. Tipu’s father and mother, who were visiting him these days, were asleep in a separate room. They told the police that Tipu was in a good mood and they had discussions over family and other matters till late into the night.

Official sources told Dawn, Tipu, who was about 45, had to attend a sports gala in the Gujranwala Stadium along with Commissioner Muhammad Asif at around 11:30am. When the commissioner reached the venue, he found the DC absent and asked his staff to contact him. The staff of the DC House told the commissioner that Tipu had not come out of his room since morning. When his room was opened by breaking the window down, his body was hanging from the ceiling fan, with a computer cable around his neck.

The Punjab Forensic Science Agency (PFSA) staff collected the forensic evidence from the crime scene while autopsy was conducted at the Gujranwala District Headquarters (DHQ) Hospital. The police said the cause of the death would be determined by the forensic report.

Civil Lines division Superintendent of Police Muhammad Afzal would lead the investigation along with other officials of the law enforcement agencies.

After the news spread, the commissioner, regional police officer and other senior officers of all the districts of the division reached the spot.

The police did not allow anybody to exit from the DC House and its staff, including cook and servants, were being interrogated.

Sohail Ahmad Tipu belonged to the 29th common of Pakistan Administrative Services (PAS) and hailed from Arifwala. He was posted as the Gujranwala deputy commissioner some four months ago after serving as additional secretary (finance) in Lahore. He is survived by a widow, three daughters and a son who were residing in Lahore.

The sources said Tipu looked stressed for the last few days as per the information provided by his subordinate staff; however, nobody knew the reasons of his stress.

(Gujrat correspondent Waseem Ashraf Butt also contributed to this report.)

Published in Dawn, March 23rd, 2018

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