Mumbai: Mansukh Hiren, the owner of the explosives-laden Scorpio that was found abandoned outside the Mumbai home of industrialist Mukesh Ambani, died approximately 12 to 24 hours before his body was fished out, was found “unclothed” and had four abrasions over his face, his post-mortem report has revealed. It, however, does not mention the cause of his death.
In the report, accessed by ThePrint, under the head of the possible cause of death, it says “opinion reserved pending for chemical analysis report”.
An expert also said that the post-mortem report does not establish if the death was caused by drowning, and that this would be clear only after a test called the diatom test is conducted.
Hiren, 48, was found dead at Mumbra Creek, with handkerchiefs stuffed in his mouth, on 5 March. His wife, Vimala Hiren, has alleged that Hiren was murdered and that he did not commit suicide, as claimed by police. In her statement to police, she has alleged that she has a “strong suspicion” that it was senior police officer Sachin Waze who killed her husband.
Hiren’s post-mortem report mentions no other internal or external injury apart from four abrasions — two over the face on the left side, one over the left nostril and one on the right side of the cheek.
The report adds that the body had started to decompose, his eyeballs were bulging out and he had “peeling of skin over back” along with “foul smelling blood tinged fluid oozing from his nostrils”.
Hiren, an auto parts dealer, was the owner of the Scorpio found abandoned outside Antilia on 26 February.
During questioning by the Mumbai Police, he had claimed that he took the car from Thane to Mumbai on 17 February but that it broke down near the Mulund toll naka.
He told the police that he left the car there and took a cab home. The next day when he returned, his car was missing and he even registered a complaint at the Vikhroli police station.
His wife has also alleged that the car was in the possession of Sachin Waze for three months and that the police officer met Hiren on the day that the auto parts dealer went missing.
On Wednesday, Home Minister Anil Deshmukh announced Waze’s removal from the Mumbai Police’s Crime Intelligence Unit until the inquiry into Hiren’s death is completed.
Viscera preserved for chemical analysis
The post-mortem report also does not mention presence of sand or earth within the nails or on the skin and feet, to establish drowning.
The viscera from stomach, liver, blood, nail clippings, scalp has been preserved for a chemical analysis. Pieces of sternum (bones) have also been preserved for a diatom test — a test essential to conclude if death was due to downing.
“A diatom test helps in finding if death occurred due to drowning. Diatoms in the form of unicellular algae are present in water where drowning took place and when the inhaled water enters the body including lungs, stomach the diatoms in water also get transported to body organs,” a forensic expert said.
“If the diatoms inside the body match with the water where the body was found, then it may serve as a corroborative or even a conclusive evidence to support the diagnosis of death.”
The report also says that Hiren had “washerwoman’s hands”, “the body was stained with mud at places and cyanosis of nails was present”. It adds that there was no injury to external genitals.
“This shows that the body had remained inside water for over eight to nine hours. It had started decomposing. Washerwoman’s hands is a condition wherein fingers get wrinkled, chapped, when someone puts his or her hand inside water for long,” a second forensic expert said.
“This reiterates that he was inside the water for a long time. Peeling of the skin also appears to be because of the decomposition. The abrasions could be because of rubbing or dragging against a coarse surface.”
No head injuries, lungs, heart also intact
According to the report there are no head, scalp, skull or brain injuries found on Hiren’s body.
Moreover, the walls, ribs, cartridges were also intact and so were the larynx, trachea, and bronchi, though they had turned brownish red due to decomposition.
Both the left and right lungs, heart and vessels too were intact. The report does not mention collection of water either in the lungs or stomach, which experts say is highly likely in a case of drowning, however, not necessary.
In the abdomen, there were gases of decomposition and no free fluid or blood was found in the abdomen cavity. The small and large intestine, pancreas, spleen, kidneys were also found to be “soft due to decomposition”, the report says.
“This again reconfirms that the body had started decomposing because it was inside water for very long,” the first expert said. “Whether the death was caused due to drowning or not will be clear only after the diatom test is done and the report is out.”
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