Soldier found dead after blaming seniors in TV sting

New Delhi, March 3 (IANS) A soldier who accused senior officers of harassment in a TV sting has been found dead at an abandoned barrack in a Maharashtra cantonment area, the Indian Army said on Friday, alleging that he committed suicide because of a “guilt factor of letting down superiors” in an interview during the secret operation by a Marathi language channel.

The body of gunner Lance Naik Roy Mathew, 33, was recovered on Thursday near Devlali Cantonment.

“Preliminary investigations have revealed that it may be a result of a series of events which were triggered by media personnel managing to videograph (Roy) by asking questions on his duties without his knowledge,” an army statement said.

“It is likely that the guilt factor of letting down superiors or conveying false impression to an unknown individual led him to take the extreme step,” the army statement said.

Mathew had gone missing from the cantonment after the video of the sting went viral. He had featured in the video showing juniors posted as ‘sahayaks” alleging that they were made to tend to the personal needs of their officers.

The statement said no enquiry could have been ordered against Mathew as the identities of army personnel involved in the clipping were hidden.

“Complaint has been lodged with the local police and an enquiry has been ordered by army authorities to investigate the circumstances leading to his death. The army is offering all assistance in this regard to the family of the deceased and the civil administration,” it said.