A senior officer of the Forest Department here allegedly committed suicide on Monday, apparently due to harassment and blackmailing by some seniors and a few others, including two local journalists, police said.

Gopal Kale (52), a member of Indian Forest Service (IFS) posted as Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) at Pandharkawda here in Vidarbha, consumed pesticides at his official quarters at around 9 am, they said.

In a suicide note, Kale alleged he had been forced to take the extreme step due to harassment and blackmailing by a dozen people — two reporters of a vernacular daily in Wardha, representative of a private channel, four senior officers and four to five junior employees working under him.

Inspector Chandansingh Bayas of Pandharkawda Police Station, when contacted, confirmed the recovery of the suicide note naming a dozen persons. “We have completed the spot inquest and registered a case of accidental death,” Mr. Bayas said, adding the police are looking into the charges of blackmailing and harassment by the persons named in the note.

The note alleged subordinate officers and employees indulged in corruption and leaked confidential department information to the media which was used to blackmail him, he said, adding Kale’s wife has gone to Hyderabad and that they were awaiting her arrival for further details.