There’s something about controversial stories that draws us towards them, isn’t there? A twisted murder always gets the eyeballs popping. Take India’s most famous nuclear scientist, Homi Bhabha for example. Over the years, we have read and heard a bunch of theories on his death. Some also called it one of the deadliest blows to the nation by American CIA. Perhaps the CIA was involved – after all Bhabha had promised to make India a nuclear-ready state back in 1966.
Let’s start with some well known names before talking about the people who got lost in time.
1. Lal Bahadur Shatri
India’s first Prime Minister to die while in office, Lal Bahadur Shastri’s death is still very much mystery. The year was 1966 when Shastri and the then President of Pakistan, Ayub Khan, met in Tashkent, Russia, for a summit that had been organised by Soviet PM Alexei Kosygin. The meeting was of very high importance because a declaration was signed between India and Pakistan, that made the armies of the countries retrieve their positions and return to base post the 1965 war.
That very night, PM Shastri died. When he was found dead, his body was blue with cuts all over. No postmortem was carried out.
Moreover, Shastri’s daughter was the last one to speak to him before his death. His last words to her were, “I’m going to have a glass of milk and sleep.” The line got disconnected and Suman (his daughter) tried again. When she finally got through 15 minutes later, he was already dead. This was also very suspicious because Shastri was a healthy man for his age, and a heart attack instantly killing him like that would have been unnatural.
Fast forward to 2009. A journalist named Anuj Dhar (author of the book, CIA’s Eye on South Asia) asked the Prime Minister’s Office under an RTI plea, to declassify a document supposedly related to Shastriji’s death. The PMO replied that it had only one document relating to Shastriji’s death but refused to declassify it under a clause that would “prejudicially affect the sovereignty and integrity of the country, the security, strategic, scientific or economic interests of the state, relation with foreign state or lead to incitement of an offence”.
The most important person of the country dies, and the government has only one document?