Forensic report hasn't been able to establish cause of death

Contrary to the initial claims of the police and the college management, the Forensic Sciences Laboratory has found no trace of any narcotic substance in the remains of Manipuri student Richard Loitam, who died last month under mysterious circumstances.

Speaking on the condition of anonymity, sources at the FSL at Madivala here said traces of the over-the-counter pain reliever paracetamol were found in his viscera.

The forensic report was submitted to the Bangalore (Rural) police on Thursday. “The report came to us in a sealed envelope and we sent it to Victoria Hospital without opening it,” said Superintendent of Police D. Prakash.

A student of the Acharya's NRV School of Architecture (ASArch) on the outskirts of the city, 19-year-old Loitam died in his sleep on April 17. His family and friends claim that he was beaten to death by two of his seniors.

But the police have maintained so far that the boy died of injuries he sustained in a road accident two days before his death and have registered a case of unnatural death.

However, the FSL report has not been able to establish the cause of death.

“It cannot be said for sure if he died due to the beating. It seems unlikely that the beatings caused his death. He was seen talking to friends three to four hours after the brawl,” said a source at the FSL.

Sources said further tests would be conducted on the pillow and bed-sheets used by Loitam on the night of his death. “There are blood stains on the pillow and sheets. We will ascertain if the stains were caused while he was alive or after his death,” said a source in the forensic department of Victoria Hospital.

‘Report shoddy'

Meanwhile, the boy's mother, R.K. Bidyabati, slammed the report as shoddy and unprofessional.

Ms. Bidyabati, who is an Assistant professor of Microbiology at the Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Sciences in Imphal, said: “The Histopathology report, which will conclusively establish the cause of death, has not yet been submitted. It takes no more than a week. It is being deliberately delayed.”

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