Inside the Vyapam Death Trap

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Rajendra-AryaRajendra Arya

Cause of Death: Liver failure, Died on 27 June 2015

Charges: Middleman ‘His body was blue.

“..We suspect something wrong happened at the hospital..” – Rajendra’s Brother


 

Rajendra Arya was admitted on 26 June to BIMR Hospital (Birla), Gwalior, citing fever and body ache. In a couple of hours his condition worsened and he was asked to move to a betterequipped facility. But he died the next morning in a small clinic. The family’s decision to shift Rajendra from a renowned private hospital to a small clinic has raised several doubts.

The patient-release papers from BIMR, accessed by TEHELKA, confirm that Rajendra was admitted with complaints of fever, body ache and vomiting. However, within 24 hours, the final diagnosis by the hospital was that of liver failure. Documents from the clinic where he died. state that he was admitted with a low pulse rate at 8.15 am and passed away at 10.45 am.

Before he fell ill, Rajendra had just returned from Kota after enrolling his son Rahul in a medical coaching course. “Being a doctor, he must have been aware of liver complications as claimed in the post-mortem report. But he never had any serious medical condition,” says Rahul, 18. Family members and neighbours doubt the nature of the doctor’s death. “Investigation has been going on for two-three years now. Since then, at least 41 people related to Vyapam have died. This cannot be solved at the individual level as it is part of a larger conspiracy,” says Ram Prakash, Rajendra’s elder brother. “ Initial reports at Birla were normal but the final reports mentioned a complete breakdown of the system. Also, as his body turned blue, we suspect that something wrong happened at the hospital.” His nephew Diwan Singh agrees, “People at the top are enjoying in ac rooms and while those at the bottom are being killed.”

TEHELKA went to BIMR to inquire about Rajendra’s case and its director’s response substantiated the relatives’ claims.

Rajendra had been arrested in May 2014 and was on bail since 21 November. Rahul, who was handling the legal matters when his father was in custody, says he cannot recall his father doing anything that suggested his involvement in the scam. “The STF arrested him after Rajendra Radia from Gohad took his name,” he says.

Legal cases have depleted the family’s finances, forcing Rahul to take care of his three siblings. The loans his father took for the house and car are also to be paid off. Rahul has already given up his ambition to become a doctor. “Hum bas itna chahte hain ki hume pareshan na kiya jae aur mere pita par lage sabhi aropon ko hata liya jae (We just want them to stop troubling us and drop all charges levelled against my father),” he says.


Narendra-Singh-TomarNarendra Singh Tomar

Cause of Death: Heart attack Died on 28 June 2015

Charges: Arranging fake candidates to appear for PMT

“..We do not believe that it was a natural death. The jail administration is responsible for my brother’s death..” – Narendra’s Brother


 

Incidentally, veterinary doctor Narendra Singh Tomar, too, died on the same day as Rajendra. Tomar was accused of arranging fake candidates who appeared for the PMT on behalf of genuine candidates. He surrendered after a notice was issued against him on 15 February this year. His family members doubt the police’s claim that he died due to heart attack and hold the jail administration responsible for the death. “There were 15 missed calls from an unknown number on my sister’s mobile, followed by a message received at 2.30 am saying that my brother has passed away,” says Narendra’s brother Vikram. It is still unclear whose number it was.

Narendra’s father Kailash Singh broke down several times while describing the details of the most horrific night of his life. “Police 3.30 subeh ghar par aai mere bache ki marne ki khabar dene (The police arrived at our home at 3.30 am to give us the news of our child’s death).”

His relatives point out that the jail hospital records that mention both stomach ache and heart attack as the cause of death leave enough room for suspicion. According to them, the STF implicated Narender. Stooping down on his rented residence, the STF had allegedly forced Narender and his landlord to sign documents admitting his involvement in the scam .

“Journalist Akshay Singh died soon after he met us. The dean of Jabalpur medical college, too, died around the time of our son’s death. This is an alarming situation,” says Kailash.

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“The government should immediately transfer my younger son, who teaches in a government school in Ujjain, to Morena. I fear for his life. And I hate the chief minister now.”

The Tomars’ neighbours have signed a petition demanding a CBI enquiry, security for the family, transfer of Narendra’s younger brother, access to jail and hospital CCTV footage and the post-mortem report.

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