Police Probe Into Bhaktapur Suffocation Death Continues

It was at around 11 pm on Sunday when Salam Tamang called his wife Shantimaya Blon Tamang on her mobile phone multiple times. But his 40-year-old wife Shantimaya, who was living with her daughters at a rented flat in at Ward 10 of Suryabinayak Municipality, did not respond to the calls.
Being afraid, Salam then called Sonam Tamang, a neighbour, and requested to have a look over his family.
When Sonam reached the flat, he saw three people lying unconsciously. Sonam then immediately called the police.
A team under Police Inspector Sagar Karki from Metropolitan Police Circle, Jagati was deployed towards the site.
According to the police, since all the doors and windows of the room were closed from inside, they broke into the room by force with the help of locals.
The authorities then found Shantimaya lying unconsciously alongside her two daughters — 22-year-old Sunita Tamang and 18-year-old Anita Tamang.
“Among the three, Sunita was drooling. They were rushed for treatment to Madhyapur Hospital. Unfortunately, Sunita died during the treatment,” said Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Dipak Giri, spokesperson for Metropolitan Police Range, Bhaktapur.
According to a press statement issued by the Range on Tuesday, the hospital sources have informed that the health condition of Shantimaya and Anita was improving but they were unable to speak.
Meanwhile, Salam lodged a complaint under a suspected murder over the death of Sunita at Metropolitan Police Circle, Jagati on Monday.
“Following the complaint, we have begun the investigation,” DSP Giri said.
“We found that Anita was in her postpartum period and they had burned ember charcoals to keep her warm. However, with the doors and windows closed, the oxygen depleted and the three suffocated,” added DSP Giri.
However, further inquiry also showed that the marriages of Sunita and Anita were on the rocks, because of which they were living with their mother. Similarly, Anita’s newly born child was also absent. When investigated, the child was found to be given to the relatives of Sonam’s friend James Kusel for care.
“There are certain aspects which have raised suspicion over the incident. For now, it seems that it was an accident stemming from the burning charcoals within closed room but we are investigating further to be sure,” said DSP Giri.
According to DSP Giri, they have sent the deceased’s viscera and blood for examination to determine the cause of death, along with other evidences, if any.
Police have requested the public to keep their doors and windows open while using heating methods such as gas heaters, charcoals or firewood indoors, allowing enough flow for oxygen.