M A I N   N E W S

Tharoor’s wife found dead in Delhi hotel
Tribune News Service & pti

New Delhi, January 17
Sunanda Pushkar, Union Minister Shashi Tharoor's wife, who was upset over an alleged extramarital affair between her husband and a Pakistani journalist, was found dead in a five-star hotel room on Friday.

Pushkar (52) was last seen at 3.30 pm at Hotel Leela Palace in Chanakyapuri. Police sources said she was found dead in her suite No. 345 around 8.30 pm.

Tharoor's personal secretary Abhinav Kumar told the media that the body was first spotted by the minister. Tharoor, who was away for the AICC session, returned around 8:30 pm and found the door of her room locked from inside. The door was later opened and her body was found on the bed, sources said.

Tharoor called up Kumar who informed the police which reached the hotel at 9.15 pm. "She was in her night clothes and had a blanket on her. There were no injury marks on the body," Kumar said. The hotel doctors were present in the room, he said. Kumar said there was no sign of foul play, but whether it was a natural death or not couldn't be said now. "We don't know the cause of death," he said.

Police sources said they suspected it to be a case of suicide. Delhi Police spokesperson Rajan Bhagat said inquest proceedings were on by the area sub-divisional magistrate. Any death within seven years of marriage is legally required to be investigated by the SDM.

The police questioned the hotel staff and checked the CCTV footage of the lobby of the third floor where Pushkar was staying. Police sources said Pushkar’s call detailwere also being checked. A team of forensic experts reached the hotel around 10:30 pm. The police also searched the suite thoroughly to see whether Pushkar had used any medicine. Kumar told mediapersons at the hotel that Tharoor and Pushkar were staying in the suite since Thursday as “some painting work” was on at their home.

The minister was away throughout the day in the AICC, he said. Kumar said Pushkar was unwell yesterday. Pushkar and Tharoor were at the centre of a controversy over the past two days when reports emerged that she was upset over reported text and tweets between her husband and Pakistani journalist Mehr Tarar.

The couple reportedly fought over the alleged affair which came to light when Tharoor claimed his twitter handle was hacked. He made the declaration after purported controversial tweets were posted from his accounts and were believed to be addressed to the Pakistan-based journalist.

Pushkar had told some newspapers that she was considering divorce from Tharoor. Mehr denied Pushkar's allegations. Meanwhile, PM Manmohan Singh on Friday night spoke to Union Minister Shashi Tharoor and mourned his wife’s death.

‘Will go smiling’

Got so many issues diagnosed in KIMS (Kalinga Institute of Medical Sciences) that now who knows when I got 2 go with joy hastay huey jayengey (will go smiling)~ —Sunanda in one of her last tweets

Pak journo ‘shocked’

What the hell. Sunanda. Oh my God…. I just woke up and read this. I’m absolutely shocked. This is too awful for words. So tragic I don’t know what to say. Rest in peace, Sunanda
—Mehr Tarar on Twitter




The Twitter war that triggered it all
Tribune news service

New delhi, January 17
A few embarrassing tweets were sent from Union Minister Shashi Tharoor's Twitter account, apparently directed at Pakistani journalist Mehr Tarar, on Wednesday, suggesting that Tharoor was having an “extra-marital affair” with Tarar.

While Shashi said his Twitter account had been hacked, his wife Sunanda Pushkar claimed that she was the one who leaked those messages on the micro-blogging site, only to retract later. On Thursday, the couple had issued a joint statement saying that they were happily married.

At 5.27am, Sunanda had tweeted: "Joh hona hota hai woh hokay rahega. Hastay huay jayengey (Whatever is destined to happen will happen. Will go smiling).”

She had wondered why her fight with Tarar was hogging the limelight. “Guys, btw this is a personal affair. Why is it headline news? All u have achieved is Mehr telling lies & her 5 mins of fame. I have all the bbm,” Sunanda had tweeted around 6am.

In a reply to one of the tweets, Sunanda said: "Sadly, it's not the man it's the woman who hit on a man when the wife is out 2 get treated. How gross." Replying to a tweet that suggested her to stay away from the controversy, Sunanda said: "LOL I don't care about that but does a woman have to berate me 2 do that. My husband wants 2B with her. I am the last one to stop."

Last night, Sunanda had told her friends on the networking site that Tarar was "lying". Responding to a talk show on a news channel, she tweeted: "Saw your show and must tell u @mehrtarar has lied outright. I have all her emails and her bbms to my husband. I don't lie," she stated in her last tweet.

She added she was sick at the moment. "Sadly, I am too sick at the moment but will talk it one day and it's disgusting for @mehrt," she said in one of the tweets.

However, in another post, Sunanda had denied she was seeking divorce from Tharoor. She had further stressed that she and her husband were leading a happy life. "My husband @ShashiTharoor &I are very happy so a Mehr isn't going 2bother me all her lies on TV amused me," she stated.

Women in controversy

  • Mehr Tarar is a journalist who works with Daily Times, a daily e-newspaper. She studied at West Virginia University and lives in Lahore.
  • Prior to her marriage to Shashi Tharoor in August 2010, Sunanda Pushkar, 52, was a sales director in a Dubai-based real estate company Tecom. In April 2010, she had to relinquish a stake in the Kochi IPL team when allegations of corruption against Shashi created a furore.



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