Sunanda Pushkar, wife on Indian government minister, found dead following affair claims

The death of Sunanda Pushkar has sent shockwaves around Delhi

Delhi

Indian police are investigating the death of the wife of government minister, whose body was discovered in a hotel room the day after she had made a series of dramatic claims that her husband was having an affair with a Pakistani journalist.

Police said the body of Sunanda Pushkar, the wife of minister Shashi Tharoor, was found at the Leela Palace hotel in Delhi. Officer Rakesh Kumar told the Associated Press they were investigating the cause of Sunanda Pushkar's death.

A day earlier Mr Tharoor and Ms Pushkar had issued a joint statement saying they were distressed by the controversy that had played out and were in fact happily married.

The statement followed a bizarre series of events in which Ms Pushkar made allegations that her husband was having an affair with a Pakistan journalist and posted on her husband's social media page a number of messages he had apparently sent to the woman.

The Pakistani journalist, Mehr Tarar, dismissed the claims and said she was surprised that the minister's wife had been making such accusations. Later still, Ms Pushkar, sounding sedated, was interviewed live by a local television channel. On that occasion she said was sticking by her husband.

The death of Ms Pushkar sent shockwaves around the Indian capital as well as through the world of social media where the drama - which with hindsight appears tragic - had originally played out. Ms Tarar, the Pakistani journalist, expressed her shock and dismay at the news of Ms Pushkar's death.

In another twist to the story, Indian media reported on Friday night that Ms Pushkar had claimed that she was suffering from Lupus, an auto-immune disease that can attack any part of the body.

In the joint statement issued by the minister and Ms Pushkar, the pair had claimed that their social media accounts had been used to sent out unauthorised messages.

“We are distressed by the unseemly controversy that has arisen about some unauthorised tweets from our Twitter accounts. Various distorted accounts of comments allegedly made by Sunanda have appeared in the press,” it said.

Shashi Tharoor and his wife Sunanda Pushkar at their wedding reception in New Delhi in 2010 Shashi Tharoor and his wife Sunanda Pushkar at their wedding reception in New Delhi in 2010 (AP)
“It appears that some personal and private comments responding to these unauthorised tweets - comments that were not intended for publication -  have been misrepresented and led to some erroneous conclusions.”

Mr Tharoor had to resign from his first ministerial post after revelations that then-girlfriend, Ms Pushkar, had been given a free stake in a new Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket team.

According to the AFP news agency, opposition parties said the stake, reportedly worth up to $15 million, was for Mr Tharoor's behind-the-scenes services in putting together a consortium that bought a franchise in his home state of Kerala.

Mr Tharoor, a father of two adult sons, resigned in 2010 saying that his conscience was clear over the IPL scandal, telling parliament he had done “nothing improper or unethical let alone illegal”.

Mr Tharoor, who was once in the running to be secretary general of the United Nations, is the most active user of Twitter in the government and he has been instrumental in encouraging colleagues.

But it has damaged him on at least three occasions since he quit his three-decade career in the UN and entered Indian politics in 2008.

The allegations about corruption in the IPL were first exposed on the platform by the competition's top administrator Lalit Modi and in 2009 Mr Tharoor had to apologise after making a joke about “holy cows” in the cabinet.

News
people
News
people And here is why...
News
peopleStella McCartney apologises over controversial Instagram picture
Arts and Entertainment
Richard Burr remains the baker to beat on the Great British Bake Off
tvRichard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
News
The village was originally named Llansanffraid-ym-Mechain after the Celtic female Saint Brigit, but the name was changed 150 years ago to Llansantffraid – a decision which suggests the incorrect gender of the saint
newsWelsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
News
i100
Sport
footballArsenal 4 Galatasaray 1: Wenger celebrates 18th anniversary in style
Arts and Entertainment
Amazon has added a cautionary warning to Tom and Jerry cartoons on its streaming service
tv
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Kristen Scott Thomas in Electra at the Old Vic
theatreReview: Kristin Scott Thomas is magnificent in a five-star performance of ‘Electra’
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Associate Recrutiment Consultant

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Uncapped OTE: SThree: SThree Group have been well ...

Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £23000 per annum + OTE: SThree: Real Staffing Group is seeking Traine...

Year 6 Teacher (interventions)

£120 - £140 per day: Randstad Education Leeds: We have an exciting opportunity...

PMLD Teacher

Competitive: Randstad Education Manchester: SEN Teacher urgently required for ...

Day In a Page

Italian couples fake UK divorce scam on an ‘industrial scale’

Welcome to Maidenhead, the divorce capital of... Italy

A look at the the legal tourists who exploited our liberal dissolution rules
Time to stop running: At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity

Time to stop running

At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity
Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

The vintage series has often been criticised for racial stereotyping
An app for the amorous: Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?

An app for the amorous

Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid. Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?

Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid

Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

After a few early missteps with Chekhov, her acting career has taken her to Hollywood. Next up is a role in the BBC’s gangster drama ‘Peaky Blinders’
She's having a laugh: Britain's female comedians have never had it so good

She's having a laugh

Britain's female comedians have never had it so good, says stand-up Natalie Haynes
Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LED lights designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows

Let there be light

Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LEDs designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows
Great British Bake Off, semi-final, review: Richard remains the baker to beat

Tensions rise in Bake Off's pastry week

Richard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
Paris Fashion Week, spring/summer 2015: Time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris

A look to the future

It's time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris
The 10 best bedspreads

The 10 best bedspreads

Before you up the tog count on your duvet, add an extra layer and a room-changing piece to your bed this autumn
Stuart Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

This deal gives England a head-start to prepare for 2019 World Cup, says Chris Hewett
Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence
The magic of roundabouts

Lords of the rings

Just who are the Roundabout Appreciation Society?