UPDATE: Family suspects foul play in balcony fall case

The Thimphu police are still investigating the case concerning the death of a 25-year-old student of Royal Thimphu College (RTC), who succumbed to his injuries after he allegedly fell from a second floor apartment balcony on the night of December 1 in Babesa.

The deceased was admitted in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of JDWNR hospital after undergoing a surgery and was in coma till his death on December 8. The cremation took place on December 10.

Assuming the case as suicide based on the initial report, Thimphu OC said that the nature of the offence would change if they found any new evidence. As of now the police have not been able to trace any new evidence to prove the case was a murder. “But we are investigating the case as of now. No arrest has been made in connection to the case,” he said. 

However, the elder sister of the deceased is not satisfied with the way police have been investigating the case. She denies that her brother committed suicide. “I am not able to come to terms with the verdict that he committed suicide. I am sure seven of them know what really happened that night and are hiding the truth,” she mentioned.

She told Business Bhutan that when the incident occurred around 4pm she received a call from her brother who asked her to not come home as he was expecting his college friends. “Then at 11:07 pm I received a call from a girl who said my brother is in the emergency room and I could hear background noise of people arguing. They were arguing but before I could ask more the voice at the other end asked me to come to the emergency,” she said.

She said she was shocked to see her brother lying unconscious on the bed with bloodstains and oxygen mask over his mouth. “None of his friends were to be seen except a man. When I asked what had happened, he just said that my brother had jumped from the balcony.”

At 3am, she called up the police and reported the incident. By then two hours had already passed and police did not know about the incident till the sister of the deceased informed them.

 “The seven friends did not take my brother to the hospital or even call the police,” she said. 

Only after the case was reported to police, they were called to give statements. However they were not arrested.

When the sister inquired what exactly had happened, one of the girls who is rumored to be the deceased’s girlfriend had said that they were in the balcony and jokingly she had said to him that she did not want him when he suddenly jumped off the balcony.

While the police said according to the statements recorded from the girl, the deceased had followed her. She had gone to balcony to vomit and when the deceased tried to hug her, she retaliated and before she knew what was happening, the deceased had already fallen down.

The sister of the deceased argued that there were no vomit stains on the floor of the balcony or outside.

Upon inspecting the rooms of the house, the sister found bloodstains on the pillow, inside the toilet, two cushions had blood all over and the deceased’s white pajama was drenched in blood too which were seized by police while another room was in a mess and a broken glass was also found in the house.

Police seized the bloodstained items but despite all these evidences, police did not detain them on time.

“If the seven of them, three girls and four boys were detained and interrogated that same night then the whole story would have been different. I still don’t understand why they were not detained,” she said.

Police failed to conduct victimology after the case was reported and till date to determine if the deceased had suicidal tendency.

The sister of the deceased also mentioned that the next day she heard from a neighbor that a fight occurred the night and after a few seconds he heard the sound of a fall. When the neighbor came out to see what had caused the sound, he found the body lying in a pool of blood. Immediately, he called the ambulance.

She also mentioned that they noticed finger marks on the deceased’s neck as if someone had tried to strangulate him.   

The deceased is the youngest among three siblings and the only son of the family.  He studying B.Com and was in the fourth semester in RTC. He was from Trashiyangtse.

Chencho Dema from Thimphu