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Cops find no foul play in IFS officer’s death

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SHILLONG, March 17: The police on Sunday said they have not found any evidence of foul play in the death of the state’s chief conservator of forests, N. Luikham.
“We have registered a case of natural death. We are investigating the matter,” East Khasi Hills SP, Rituraj Ravi said here on Sunday.
He said he did not receive the letter the Indian Forest Service Association (IFSA) sent to Chief Secretary D.P. Wahlang, demanding a CBI probe into Luikham’s death.
The SP appealed to the people to share with the police any suspicious material relating to the case.
In the letter to Wahlang, IFSA secretary-general Suneesh Buxy said one of the factors behind Luikham’s suspected suicide was the allegation of sexual harassment by a Meghalaya government officer.
The police, however, have not found anything to suggest his death was linked to the allegation of sexual harassment against him.
The top forest officer was found dead at his residence on March 13.
“It is further learned that the late N. Luikham underwent a lot of mental trauma and agony because of these fabricated allegations backed by some powerful mining lobby in the state. It is also learned that nothing substantive has been found against the officer in the said case,” Buxy wrote in the letter, a copy of which was marked to Union Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav.
Buxy said the circumstances surrounding the officer’s death raise serious questions and urged Wahlang to assign the matter to the CBI for a detailed and impartial inquiry, and stringent action for acts of abetment or negligence, to prevent such incidents from recurring.
“His untimely demise is a blow to the battle for the conservation of natural resources,” it said.

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