NRI falls to death from hotel’s terrace, no foul play suspected
A 48-year-old non-resident Indian (NRI), settled in the United States with his family, died after ‘mysteriously’ falling from the second floor terrace garden of Taj Mansingh Hotel in Lutyens’ Delhi on Wednesday. The incident took place almost 10 hours after he checked into the hotel after flying into the city from the United States, police said.
Police suspect the man, identified as Mangalam Narendra, was drunk and was looking for a place to urinate when he went to the terrace garden and ‘accidentally’ fell from one of the edges of the lawn around noon. The hotel staff spotted him in an injured condition around 11.30 pm — almost 12 hours after the incident.
Ruling out the possibility of foul play, police said CCTV camera footage shows that the man was alone on the terrace garden when the incident took place. His earphones were found on the overhang below the terrace garden. Police suspect Narendra was trying to save his earphones from slipping off his hands when he lost his balance and fell to his death.
“There has been an unfortunate incident and we extend our deep condolences to the family. We are cooperating with the authorities and extending our full support,” read a statement issued by a spokesperson on behalf of the Indian Hotels Company Limited (IHCL).
Deputy commissioner of police (New Delhi) Madhur Verma said an electrician at the hotel was going to check the electric channel when he spotted the guest lying injured and unconscious on the ground.
The electrician told the hotel’s security staff, who, in turn, informed police about the incident. The injured man was rushed to a nearby hospital, where he was declared brought dead, said the DCP.
“There is no eyewitness to the incident. We scanned the footage several cameras but except Narendra nobody is seen entering the terrace garden half an hour before or after the incident. No case has been registered. An inquest proceeding under Section 174 of CrPC has been initiated,” said DCP Verma.
A police officer said Narendra had checked into the hotel around 2 am on Wednesday, even though he had booked a room from Tuesday. The CCTV footage of the floor shows him locking the door of his room and walking along the corridor.
“The footage shows Narendra taking the staircase to come down. He reached the second floor where the staircase ended. His movements hinted that he was urgently looking for a bathroom to urinate.
Narendra then tried using the lift, but since it was busy he did not wait for it. He is then seen going towards the terrace garden,” said the officer.