Former CBI director Ashwani Kumar (69), who had also served as governor of Manipur and Nagaland, was found hanging from the attic of his Shimla residence on Wednesday.
Himachal Pradesh police chief Sanjay Kundu, who rushed to the spot, said that investigation in the case was on and a team of forensic experts has reached the crime scene and collecting evidences.
Police said a note, ostensibly written by Kumar, had been found. Retired police officer AP Singh, who succeeded Kumar at the CBI, described Kumar’s death “absolutely shocking”.
State minister Sukhram Chaudhary visited Kumar’s house and ruled out any foul play. “His family was at home,” he told reporters. “He was very regular with his evening walks and pooja and I am told he went to the pooja room where this incident happened.”
Kumar became the Himachal Pradesh police chief in August 2006, according to information about him on the Nagaland Raj Bhavan website. He became the first police officer from the state to become the director of CBI in 2008.
He was in charge of the central agency while it investigated the infamous Aarushi Talwar murder case. He had replaced Vijay Shanker as the CBI director.
He loved Tom and Jerry and, in fact, likened his work to the cat and mouse games of the famed cartoon characters.
The 1973-batch IPS officer was a surprise announcement for the post of the director of the premier investigating agency in August 2008. Two other names, both senior to him, were doing the rounds for the prestigious posting. This was also the time when the agency was grappling with controversies surrounding the Aarushi murder case.
“I like Tom and Jerry cartoon show. Police is like the cat while the criminals are like mice. So Tom never leaves Jerry,” Kumar had said in an interview to PTI in 2008 after taking over as CBI director.