Vyapam scam: Journalist dies under mysterious circumstances; Congress raises serious concerns

Aaj Tak journalist Akshay Singh

Jhabua (MP), July 5: The Vyapam scam turned murkier on Saturday with an investigative journalist working for a leading Delhi-based news channel, TV Today group, dying under mysterious circumstances soon after he interviewed parents of a girl who was found dead after her name figured in the massive admission and recruitment scandal.

According to reports, minutes after the interview, 38-year-old Akshay Singh started frothing at the mouth. He was rushed to civil hospital and later to a private hospital, but doctors failed to revive him.

From there Akshay Singh was taken to another hospital in nearby Dahod in Gujarat, where he was declared brought dead.

An official said late tonight that a panel of three doctors was conducting post mortem in Dahod.

Akshay, who worked for TV Today group, had today called on the parents of Namrata Damor, whose body had been found under near railway tracks in Ujjain district on January 7, 2012. Today’s incident took place in Meghnagar near Jhabua town.

Namrata’s father Mehtab Singh Damor said Akshay and two others visited their house this afternoon. After the interview was over, one of them was sent to get certain papers photocopied.

As Akshay was waiting outside Damor’s house, suddenly started frothing at the mouth and collapsed, he said.

Jhabua district’s Superintendent of Police Abid Khan confirmed that a person named Akshay Singh had died in Meghnagar.

At least 25 accused/witnesses have died so far in Vyapam scam, a massive admission and recruitment racket involving several bureaucrats and politicians, and the opposition Congress has been demanding a CBI probe into the matter.

Some reports have claimed that 44 people associated with the scam have died so far.

The most high-profile death was that of Shailesh Yadav, son of Madhya Pradesh Governor Ram Naresh Yadav. Shailesh, 50, was found dead at his father’s residence in Mall Avenue area of Lucknow on March 25 this year.

Ram Naresh Yadav, also a former chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, was himself made an accused in the scam before getting relief from court.

Meanwhile, Madhya Pradesh Home Minister Babulal Gaur said the decision as to whether further probe was necessary into Akshay’s death would be taken only after getting the autopsy report.

“Let the post-mortem report come first…then we will decide on probing the issue further,” said Gaur, who arrived here for an official tour.

Meanwhile, the Congress party on Sunday expressed condolences over the demise of journalist Akshay Singh and said that yet another death in connection with the Vyapam scam raises serious concerns.

“Our heart reaches out to family of the journalist who has become the 44th victim of suspected death in the Vyapam scam of Madhya Pradesh..We are not pointing fingers in this point of death, but we are raising serious concerns,” said Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala.

Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee (DPCC) chief Ajay Maken on Saturday said that the way in which people related to Vyapam scam case are dying under mysterious circumstances is a matter of great concern.

(With Agency Inputs)

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