The personal assistant of former Deputy Chief Minister G. Parameshwara looked very worried when he returned home early on Saturday morning. His family members have filed a complaint against Income Tax Department officials, accusing them of harassment that drove Ramesh, 40, to commit suicide.
Ramesh, who had worked with Dr. Parameshwara for the past eight years, parked his car in a secluded wooded area near the Sports Authority of India (SAI) grounds on the Jnana Bharathi campus and allegedly committed suicide. The car was found parked about 200 metres from where he ended his life, police sources said. Ramesh, a native of Melahalli in Ramanagaram district, had started working as a typist in the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee office over a decade ago.
According to the family members of Ramesh, who was with Dr. Parameshwara till the I-T search operations concluded around 2.45 a.m. on Saturday, he reached his rented home at Mariyannanapalya, near Jnana Bharathi, around 5 a.m. His relatives found him to be disturbed. It is learnt that he spoke to some of his friends and relatives in the morning before having breakfast. According to his brother Satish, Ramesh again left home around 8.30 a.m.
Phone call and search
Ramesh called his friend Darshan and shared his agony about the I-T raids, saying that he felt that his reputation had been tarnished. After saying that he was going to end his life, he disconnected the call immediately. A shocked Darshan tried to reach him immediately but the phone was switched off. He alerted Rameshs family members, who reported the matter to the police.
The police launched a search based on mobile tower information and found his body around 10.30 a.m. They found a letter left on the drivers seat of Rameshs car. Believed to be written by Ramesh, the letter stated that he was disturbed by the I-T raids and was taking the extreme step.
As the news of the death spread, hundreds of people gathered at the spot. An FSL team conducted a spot inspection with video recording, following which the body was shifted to Victoria Hospital for autopsy.
Dr. Parameshwara, who visited the spot, said Ramesh was hardworking and sincere. He termed the turn of event unfortunate. He was more like a friend to me. He was at my house and was visibly disturbed. I asked him to be courageous and take some rest. He, however, insisted on returning home. I do not know the reason behind his extreme step. But it looks like he was subjected to harassment by the officials. This needs to be probed.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (West) Ramesh B. said the police were recording the statements of the family members of the deceased and have taken up a case of unnatural death.
Rameshs body was handed over to his family members after the autopsy. His final rites will be conducted at his native village on Sunday.
What the note says
In the death note recovered from the car of Ramesh, he has stated that he was taking the extreme step in fear for his reputation in the wake of the Income Tax raids, a police officer said.
Besides, he is said to have urged I-T officials not to harass his family members, including his wife and two children. He has also apologised to his wife and asked her to care for the children, while thanking the school management for providing free education to them. He has also expressed sadness in not being able to help his siblings, the police said.
(Those in distress or having suicidal tendencies can call Arogya Sahayavani Ph.: 104 for help)