Punjab bureaucrat dies after suicide bid (Lead)

October 21st, 2008 - 5:09 pm ICT by IANS  

Chandigarh, Oct 21 (IANS) A senior Punjab-cadre Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer, A.S. Chatwal, who was instrumental in organising the state’s biggest NRI convention here in January, died late Monday night after he attempted suicide at his official residence here.Chatwal, 48, a promising officer of the Punjab government in the rank of principal secretary and NRI commissioner of the state, was found hanging in the first-floor bedroom of his house in the high-security residential area for Punjab government officers in Sector 39 here.

His body was found hanging from the ceiling fan by his wife Manpreet, a doctor, when she returned from Ludhiana Monday at 8.30 p.m. He was immediately rushed to the Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) here.

Doctors at PGIMER tried to save him but declared him dead late Monday night, a hospital spokesperson said.

Chatwal left a suicide note seeking forgiveness from his parents and also his wife “for ditching her”. He did not blame anyone for his death and did not give any cause why he was taking the extreme step.

His daughter, also a doctor, had got married only last month.

The officer, who had held several important assignments during his career, was presently posted as principal secretary, non-resident Indian (NRI) affairs and non-conventional energy.

Chatwal was engaged in roping in NRIs for investing in the state and also providing special NRI cells and NRI police stations in the state to facilitate liaison between the state and the people settled abroad.

Chandigarh’s Senior Superintendent of Police S.S. Srivastava said that investigations were being made to ascertain the reasons for the suicide. Police officials said that Chatwal was disturbed due to family reasons in the past few weeks.

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