Deputy Inspector of General (prisons) B S Abbai committed suicide by hanging himself in his official residence at Parappana Agrahara in Bangalore Saturday afternoon.
He was 53 years old. His death note read: "I have not done any wrong nor have I allowed prisoners to commit any. I have been going through enormous mental stress. I love my wife and son; unfortunately, I'm leaving. Please take care of my son and wife."
But his wife Girija alleged that Additional Director General of Police S T Ramesh, head of the prison department, had constantly harassed him. However she never thought he would go to the extent of killing himself, leaving his wife and son in the lurch, she said.
Police said the incident took place between 2.30 pm and 4.30 pm. After prisons rounds, Abbai returned home around 1.50 pm. His wife and son Shivakumar, a Class VI student, were away then.
When Girija returned around 4.30 pm, she knocked the door to no avail. She looked through the window and found to her horror Abbai hanging from a window grill in the bedroom.
She raised an alarm and the door was broke open. But when the prison doctors finally came, they found him dead.
The news spread like wildfire inside the prison and inmates demanded a fair investigation. They alleged foul play, saying Abbai was never a faint-hearted officer.
Abbai's 80-year-old father stays in Bailhongal in Belgaum district with his brothers. The officer's body will be taken to Belgaum after the post-mortem on Sunday. His father is not informed of the incident as he is ailing.
For his part ADGP Ramesh sounded surprised. "I don't know what pushed him to take extreme step. He was a strict officer, known for reforming the prisoners," he said, perhaps hinting that he might have received threats from some prisoner who might have received some harsh treatment at his hands.
The big moustachioed Abbai had indeed earned the nickname, 'Tiger,' for his tough ways with the prisoners.
But sources insist that his superiors, jealous of his growing reputation, had made life difficult for him in various ways.
He did not even have the sanctioned staff strength at his office, it is said.