Forest Officer Deepali Chavan commits suicide after being threatened with fake SC-ST Atrocity case

Forest Range Officer (FRO) Deepali Chavan who was popularly known as Lady Singham, has committed suicide by shooting herself after she was threatened with a fake SC-ST Atrocity Act case. Chavan has written an emotional letter to her husband before committing suicide in which she has held senior officer Vinod Shivkumar responsible for her death.

According to Chavan, Vinod Shivkumar had been harassing her for the past several months. He had even threatened to implicate Chavan under the SC-ST Act. Falana Dikhana which has obtained the audio clip says that in the audio, Vinod Shivkumar is threatening FRO Chavan that he will invoke the Atrocity Act against her while adding that I will show you what the Atrocity Act is.

Following the threats, a distressed Chavan shot dead herself dead at her government residence. Police have issued a statement saying that they have obtained three letters written by Chavan. Deepali Chavan was posted at the Harisal forest range and was known as ‘Lady Singham’ among her colleagues.

The emotional letter written by Chavan addressed to her husband highlights the stress she was under:

I’m very pained and miss you a lot. You comforted me yesterday night and asked me to remain silent. I’ve been maintaining silence but I am unable to bear it anymore. No one has insulted me as much as my senior Shivkumar sir does.

I’ve lost my patience and I may opt to take leave but my leave won’t be approved. I’ve been wanting to talk to you and have been waiting for you to return. Even my mother has left for her village. I’m alone and this loneliness is even more distressing. Forgive me for opting to take this extreme step. You are the best husband in the world and love me very much. You come and stay with me keeping in mind my mental distress.

In spite of having informed Reddy everything, I’m still in pain. I’ve not complained about him because I’ve to work under him. You want me to progress and achieve success but I’m caught up in fake cases from which I can’t escape. Manisha Uyike will never be happy because she has ruined my life.

Do take care of yourself, mother, and Nitesh and I know you’ll certainly take care of everyone. I’ve lost my kid and have been unable to keep the promises made to you at the time of marriage.

Chavan then asks her husband to remarry and then goes on to put out the reason for her taking the extreme step in which she clearly mentions the role of Vinod Shivkumar. She writes:

Forest Ranger of Gugamal National Park Vinod Shivkumar should be held responsible for my suicide. I’m also opting for death out of extreme mental agony…you’ve borne a lot for me but I can’t help taking this extreme step as I’m very much pained.

As per available information Vinod Shivkumar, the accused in Chavan’s suicide case, has been arrested by the police. It is shocking what draconian laws such as the SC-ST Atrocity Act which is often used to exact revenge can do to even brave and fearless officers such as Chavan.

That the law is being rampantly misused is amply apparent from several recent cases that have come to light besides that of Chavan. Vishnu Tiwari was released after spending two decades in jail despite being innocent as he was falsely implicated in SC-ST Atrocity Act case.

Similarly, four Brahmins were falsely booked under the Atrocity Act as a Dalit youth filed a complaint against them after injuring himself with a brick. It is high time lawmakers take a relook at the Act and make sure provisions are made within the Act to prevent its misuse.

(Featured Image Source: Falana Dikhana)


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