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 On checking house in Hokandara because of foul-smell ... husband found dead ... wife on floor, still breathing!

On checking house in Hokandara because of foul-smell ... husband found dead ... wife on floor, still breathing!

Police were recipients of a telephone call on Wesak Poya Day (10) night that a couple staying in a house down Ratnarama Road, Hokandara South had died mysteriously and that a foul-smell was pervading the area and on inspecting it was found that the owner of the said house, a 68 year old retired senior police superintendent had died and his 70 year old wife lying beside him in the nude and the latter though not conscious was
found still breathing, as understood by the lady coroner and therefore was rushed to hospital.

This retired police superintendent Susantha de Silva and his wife a retired teacher, Shirani Niranjala Wijesiri residing down 5th Lane, along Ratnarama Road, Malabe had no children. They had neither much to do with their relatives and neighbours either. After retirement the said police superintendent had suffered paralysis and was in an invalid state and it was his wife who had cared for him.

On Wesak Poya Day when those living around the area were spending their time in a leisurely mood had been wondering as from where an unpleasant odour was emanating from. As such the neighbours had got together and had inspected the surrounding area and finally come to the conclusion that it was from this police superintendent's house from where the foul-smell was coming from. Though the bell in the house was rung, there had been no response. As there was no response after dialling telephone numbers in the house, they had then jumped over the wall of the house and tried to carry out a check. On that occasion they were able to peep through the windows of the house and were able to observe that the couple in the house were lying on the floor. Neighbours who took fright at what they witnessed then proceeded to ring 119 immediately and inform Athurugiriya Police.

On information that 2 people had died, the inquirer into sudden deaths and police hastened there on Wesak Poya Day night itself and had broken open the door after which they had switched on the lights and made an inspection when they were able to observe that both the senior police superintendent and his wife who were presumably dead were lying naked on the floor. The police superintendent's body was lying by the side of a bed with his head under the bed. The body gave an unbearable stench and it was noticed that he had passed away. However his wife who was lying near a door in the house in a transverse manner and when the coroner got close to her and made a noise, she had responded by turning her head. Though in a difficult condition, it was then noted that she still was breathing. As such, prompt action was taken to bring an ambulance and dispatch her to hospital. The body of the police superintendent was directed to a postmortem.

On a survey conducted inside the house by the police there was a clue to say that the accident had occured while they were partially engaged in the process of some activity of cleaning. Whatever it is, even until the stench of the dead body of the male person was emanating, the fact that the lady lying two or three days in this manner still with her life intact was something which caught the attention of police. No evidence has still been detected that somebody had been involved in looting activity as such. It is not clear as to why both of them were in the nude either. What happened to this couple is difficult to deduce so far and if the police superintendent's wife who is presently undergoing treatment at the Intensive Care Unit at National Hospital, Colombo comes into a normal state, further pertinent information could be extracted in this respect, police believe.

Information -- Airangi Edirisingha

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