Bengaluru: Six Indian Air Force officers have been booked for murder after the body of a trainee flying officer was found hanging in a room of Air Force Technical College (AFTC), a police officer said.
Under Trainee Flying Officer (UTFO) Ankit Kumar Jha joined the force in February last year but his training was terminated on September 20 for “misconduct” based on an investigation into a complaint against him by a woman trainee officer, the IAF said in a statement, condoling his death.
“‘A Court of Inquiry by IAF is underway to establish the circumstances leading to the death of the UTFO,” it said, adding the IAF is cooperating with the investigation being conducted by the police on the matter.
The statement said a postmortem examination was conducted on September 23 and the report is awaited.
Based on his brother Aman Jha’s complaint, the police registered the case against six IAF officers at Gangammana Gudi police station on Saturday in the death of Ankit, the police officer said.
Aman has also alleged in his complaint that attempts were made to tamper with the evidence as people from the AFTC were present around 4.30 am on Saturday at the police station with a piece of evidence he was also looking for.
He even wondered how the people from AFTC knew beforehand about his presence in the police station in the early hours and reached there.
“The reason behind the death is yet to be ascertained. Our investigations are on. Jha was a trainee cadet and he was found hanging in one of the rooms of AFTC,” a senior police officer told PTI.
“The officers against whom the complaint was lodged have not been arrested but the Indian Air Force has assured us all assistance,” the officer said.
He added that they are waiting for the post-mortem report to carry forward the investigation.
Referring to media reports in the case, the IAF statement said, “The Indian Air Force condoles the unfortunate loss of life and prays for strength to the bereaved family in their time of grief. The IAF is cooperating with the investigation being conducted by the police on the matter.”
It said an officer was deputed to convey the news of “this unfortunate happening” to the parents of late AK Jha in Delhi and his kin visited the AFTC on Saturday where they were briefed about the incident.
The statement said that Ankit Jha’s training had been terminated on September 20 after informing his father of the same”.
“Termination of training was the result of recommendations made by a Court of Inquiry (COI), which was instituted following a complaint by a fellow woman trainee officer against the UTFO on June 30,” it said.
“It had been established that the UFTO had committed certain acts of misconduct. The inquiry proceedings were duly examined at multiple levels before being approved at the Air headquarters, as per established procedure on the subject,” the IAF said.
Based on his brother Aman Jha’s complaint, the police registered a case against six IAF officers at Gangammana Gudi police station on Saturday for Ankit’s death, according to local police.
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