Indian politician and TikToker Sonali was ‘drugged’ before her death: Police
Indian politician and TikTok star Sonali Phogat whose mysterious death is now being investigated as a murder, was forcefully given a drink spiked with an “obnoxious chemical,” claimed police in India’s coastal Goa state.
Officials have also arrested two men in connection, after Phogat, 42, was brought dead to a Goa hospital on Aug.23. Phogat was a member of India’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and a popular TikToker.
Phogat, who is from the northern state of Haryana, began her career as a news anchor before taking part in the reality show Bigg Boss, the Indian version of Big Brother. She subsequently entered politics with the BJP in 2008. Her death was initially declared a heart attack by doctors and police.
As details emerged and her family alleged foul play, her death began to be described by several Indian news channels as a sensational murder mystery.
The two arrested by Goa police were identified as Sudhir Sangvan and Sukhwinder Singh and have been accused of murdering the politician. While Sangvan was Phogat’s personal assistant, Singh was her aide.
Sonali Phogat was cremated in her hometown by her family on Friday
Inspector general of police Omvir Singh Bishnoi said the two “intentionally gave the victim an obnoxious chemical substance in a liquid” just hours before she died earlier this week. Bishnoi said a chemical analysis would reveal the “drug” that was allegedly administered.
As per police, the two took her from the Curlies beach shack at Anjuna beach to hotel Grand Leony after she started feeling ill.
“Based on witness statements, CCTV footage from the club, it was seen that Sudhir and Sukhwinder partied with the deceased, and videos show that a substance was forcefully given to the victim by one of the accused,” he told reporters.
He claimed the two accused have confessed to the crime but said their motive remained unknown. Sonali Phogat is survived by her brother and her teenage daughter, who lit her funeral pyre.
“When confronted with this, Singh and Sangvan confessed to the police that they intentionally gave the victim an obnoxious chemical in a liquid and made her drink it. Then she lost control and she was looked after [by the accused]. Another shot [of the footage] shows she was given something in a liquid,” he added.
A post mortem revealed she had “multiple blunt force injuries” on her body, according to officials.
“Women police officers who conducted a physical examination of Sonali Phogat’s body have not found any sharp-edged injuries on the body,” police said.
Police said on Friday that CCTV footage showed a liquid ingested by her was spiked with an “obnoxious substance” and she was made to drink it.
Police had registered a case in the death of the politician following a complaint filed by her brother Rinku Dhaka, who accused the two men of murdering his sister.
Her body was brought back to her hometown in Haryana’s Hisar and last rites were performed by her family on Friday afternoon.
She is survived by her teenage daughter Yashodhara who lit her funeral pyre in the presence of other family members. Phogat’s husband had died in 2016 under mysterious circumstances near his farmhouse in Hisar.