'Pest control death' Rameez Chougule body exhumed

Over two months after the death of a 27-year-old man and his sister under mysterious circumstances following pest control at their residence, his partially decomposed body was exhumed from the Versova cemetery as part of the probe, police said today.

The body of Rameez Chougule was exhumed from the Yari Road burial ground in Versova for samples to carry out clinical analysis yesterday. After collecting the samples, the body was buried yesterday itself, said Sharad Borse, senior inspector at Versova police station.

"It would take at least one month for the forensic experts to prepare the analysis report in which cause of death would be mentioned," Borse said.

Rameez and his sister Rehab (25) had died mysteriously within 24 hours of each other on July 3, after pest control was conducted in their apartment in suburban Andheri. Both showed identical symptoms prior to death, police said.

The circumstances surrounding their deaths made them suspect foul play, police added.

While Rameez died at his house during treatment by a family doctor, Rehab died at a private hospital. Rameez had been buried without post mortem while Rehab's autopsy was conducted.

The presence of excessive amount of aluminium phosphide, a poisonous compound widely used in pesticides, in Rehab's system had suggested poisoning. Traces of the lethal chemical were found in her stomach and lungs, police said.

While three persons associated with pest control work were arrested for the deaths, the police are still looking for the fourth person, who carried out pest control at the house.

Police had sought permission for exhuming Rameez's body after a panel of four doctors said a postmortem was needed to ascertain the cause of the siblings' death.

The Versova police obtained permission of the suburban collector to exhume Rameez's body on August 27. Later, the approval of the local tehsildar and health department was sought, following which the body was exhumed, police said.

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