Family, friends attend Saldanha funeral

The family of Indian nurse, Jacintha Saldanha on Monday refused to comment on her suicide notes, compensation announced by the Australian radio or the media reports that she had a tiff with a colleague. The body of Saldanha was found hanging on December 7 in her quarters at the King Edward VII Hospital in London after a Royal hoax call.

Addressing the media after her funeral at Shirva in Udupi district, Karnataka, Benedict Barboza, her husband, and family friends said the London Metropolitan Police have assured a full investigation. "We are waiting for the inquest report. We don't want to comment on any issue at this stage. Give us some space for grieving. We hope the media would respect the privacy of Barboza and his children," said Stephen Almeda, a family friend. At the press meet held on the premises of the Our Lady of Health Church, Barboza was flanked by son Junal, and family friends Almeda and Roque D'Cunna.

D'Cunna said the family would wait for the inquest report. "At this stage, we have not complained against the hospital or the Australian radio jockeys. We have no such plan. Let the investigation get over. We have learnt that inquest report was adjourned until March 26,'' he said. They refused to comment on the media report that Saldanha had a dispute with another nurse. "Barboza is not in a position to answer such queries,'' said Almeda.

The Barboza family said they were not formally aware of the compensation announced by the Australian radio firm. "Barboza and children would return to London where they expect to lead a normal life.''

Earlier Saldanha's body, which was kept at a hospital morgue in Manipal, was taken to Barboza's three-roomed, single-storey house at Surkula near Shirva.

Barboza and children, clad in black suits, sat beside the coffin even as grief-stricken women recited the prayers. As the ambulance carrying the dead slowly moved out of the house compound, Saldanha's mother-in law, Carmine, in her seventies, was brought outside to bid the final farewell.

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