Sridevi Death: The Wait for the Forensic Report and More Questions
A round-up of the developments in the tragic case
The Sridevi story has gripped an entire subcontinent and beyond. Ever since news broke about the Bollywood legend passing away in a hotel in Dubai, social media has gone into a tizzy. The story is far from over and the developments keep changing by the minute.
A day after she passed away (February 24), the focus was on the morgue in Dubai where her body was sent for autopsy. Today (February 26), the reports were expected and the entire media waited with bated breath as to what they would reveal. However, even before the authorities could say anything, social media feeds were flooded with various theories by people who thought they knew it all. With some pointing out at cosmetic surgeries being the cause of her demise, others spoke of how high amounts of stress led to her untimely death.
As with every celebrity death, there were many theories surrounding this one too and some important questions were raised on the timings of the incident after a report on the timeline appeared in a leading newspaper in the Gulf.
The timeline as reported went as follows:
• Boney Kapoor surprised Sridevi at the hotel where she was staying (Jumeirah Emirates Towers) at around 5:30 pm. Following which, they chatted for 15 minutes and then decided to step out for dinner.
• Sridevi then said she would take a shower and get ready, which is when she got into the bathroom. This everyone assumes was around 6 pm.
• When she didn’t emerge, Boney got suspicious and soon found her in the bathroom, unconscious in the tub.
• Following the aforementioned timeline, and the fact that Boney called a friend for help only at 9 pm, many questioned on why medical help to the actress was delayed.
THE BIG WAIT
As the questions mounted, so did the speculations. Initially, it was rumoured that the authorities had finished their analysis and the report would be released by noon. Incidentally, these reports were actually expected by 10 am. The delay led to further suspicions of foul play. Meanwhile, the private jet in which Sri’s mortal remains were supposed to be taken back was on standby. It was almost announced that everything would be over by 3.30 pm and the family would be on the way back to India by 4 pm.
Up until this point, the cause of her death was commonly thought to be a massive cardiac arrest though the final confirmation from the autopsy was still awaited. All of a sudden, the autopsy became the focal point as it would clear a lot of doubts being raised. It was even said that there would be a second autopsy which never happened. After what seemed like an eternity, the results were finally out at 2 pm this afternoon. Much to everyone’s surprise, the reports ruled out any trace of a heart attack, and cited ‘accidental drowning’ as the cause of death. The report highlighted traces of alcohol that were found in her blood, indicating that she must have had a slip under intoxication. Following this, there was an official announcement by the Dubai Police stating that the case was now transferred to Dubai Prosecution for regular legal procedures to be completed. This is the standard process in all cases involving death of a foreigner. As her fans still try to wrap their heads around the fact that Sridevi is no more, there are many who can’t seem to join the dots to what exactly happened that night in room 2201 of Jumeirah Emirates Towers Hotel. And, with a loss like this, it will be a while until they finally let it go.
The accidental drowning report has led to a lot of questions as to why the cardiac arrest was mentioned in the first place.
After all this, Sridevi’s body still hasn’t left the UAE. India’s Ambassador to the UAE, Navdeep Singh Suri, was quoted as saying that with the case being referred to Public Prosecution, the repatriation issue was ‘open ended’ and that clearance is still awaited. Meanwhile, the embalming hasn't taken place yet, and is only likely to happen by noon tomorrow, resulting in which, the remains will only reach India tomorrow night (February 27, 2018). Again, these are all speculations.
Sridevi’s last journey back home has proved to be as eventful as her life.