Anthia Mishra visited India way back in 1989 in search of spiritual quest but little she knew that she was destined to meet her future Husband Parmanand Mishra. It was love at first sight when they met at Satyananda Yoga Ashram in Bihar and was further cemented into a nuptial knot. Marriage blessed them with three lovely children and they led a happy family life in Australia.
In 2005 Parmanand Mishra travelled to India to see his old father. His flight landed in Delhi on 25th February and fatigued from a long haul he decided to stay overnight in Amar Hotel Paharganj. The next day morning he was found dead under mysterious circumstance in his hotel room. Anthia Mishra’s fairy tale of blissful marital life took a nightmarish turn. Since then she has been running from pillar to post in search of truth and justice.
In a candid interview I had with her on the net she recounts her ordeal of anguish and pain.
When did you first meet Parmanand Mishra and how it culminated in marriage?
I met my husband Parmanand Mishra in the Satyananda Yoga Ashram in Munger Bihar in 1989. We fell in love at first sight. In fact it is a very beautiful love story. I asked Parmanand if he would like to visit Australia and he agreed. We married in 1989.
Tell us something about your Husband and his family?
My husband’s family is very genuine, honest and sharing. They work hard in their business or on the farm in the village. We are very close. They accepted our marriage fully from the moment we met. All our experiences with Parmanand’s family have been positive ones. They made me feel proud of my marriage to Parmanand and proud of his culture and Indian heritage. They are always in our thoughts and in our hearts every day and I admire them very much.
What was the purpose of his visit to Delhi and why didn’t his family accompany him?
The purpose of Parmanand’s visit to India was to visit his father who is elderly and to spend some time in his village teaching yoga for free something he enjoyed doing. The children and I stayed in Australia. It can be very expensive for the whole family to travel to India. He was only going to be gone for three months. It would have been disruptive to have taken the children out of school at the time.
Under what circumstance was he found dead in a hotel in Delhi?
Parmanand arrived at Delhi airport on night of 25 February 2005, put a deposit down on an Enfield Bullet motorcycle on 26 February. On 27 February he paid in full for the motorcycle and in the afternoon he sent an email to our son to tell the family he had arrived safely and he would be leaving for the village the next day and he would send more email when he arrived. Parmanand’s strongest quality is being very reliable. He told us his plans.
Then apparently on 1 March 2005 the hotel alleged Parmanand wanted an early wakeup call at 8 am. This is out of character for someone who sets their alarm to 5 am every morning to get up and practice yoga. The hotel and police allege lots of false things. I was informed about the death 14 hours afterwards.
Did he lead a happy marital life?
Yes Parmanand and I led a very happy married life together for 16 years – we have three children. He and I felt very comfortable together in each others company. We achieved a lot together that most couples could never imagine. It was an amazing relationship.
The police investigation led to claiming his death from acute pulmonary and cerebral edema, why you don’t believe the police version?
The police version is very substandard by Indian standards. There was no crime scene investigation and all evidence from the hotel room was thrown out. The police have not established a cause of death but only the effects of the cause of death. What happened to him that led to the acute cerebral and pulmonary edema? The day after he died the autopsy was performed by a student at Lady Harding hospital who did not find the cause of death and handed over the body for cremation the same day because he said that the body was going off. If the body is going off then refrigerate and give me time to come to India. All this was going on without my knowledge. Here they are, worrying that the body is going off and they must cremate, and yet they let the viscera stand for many months at CFSL Rohini to go off, without any care, rendering it unsuitable for testing? When I met with the Director of FSL Rohini in 2006 he was bragging to me that his facility was the best in the world. I think he needs to do a reality check.
What could be the motive to substantiate your allegation he was murdered?
First of all I have proof that Parmanand was discriminated against for being an NRI Indian when he visited India. Secondly, on March 2004, a man by the name of Jean Ziegler was found dead in the same hotel, Amar Hotel in Paharganj, in similar circumstances. I have seen his police file and postmortem reports and they are very similar to Parmanands. If I was the police I would have established what the motive was when it happened and treated the hotel room as a crime scene, taken evidence for testing, proper witness statements, got a second post mortem performed by a senior qualified doctor to find the cause of death and kept the body refrigerated. The viscera and blood samples should have undergone thorough proper regulation testing. The body would not be cremated until all tests are complete and the cause of death is found. The police have clearly demonstrated that they did not do their job because they did nothing to find out anything and broke the law by not investigating. They did not even register an FIR about the matter and held the inquiry without any notification to me, denying me of my rights as the next of kin. Why would the police do that?
What does his autopsy report state?
The autopsy report states that his lungs and other organs were congested and the congestion has never been investigated. Nor did the student performing the post mortem take the appropriate organs for testing for acute cerebral edema and pulmonary edema i.e. the lungs and brain. The report is lacking in information and there is no comment on the cause of death. It is written in the report that Parmanand was found unconscious in the hotel room at 8.30 am when police went there, and then admitted to hospital at 4.30 pm. How is it that the police did not call an ambulance or doctor when the hospital is just 5 minutes away from the hotel? Why would the police be with him in the hotel room for 8 hours without getting medical help or examination?
What is the present status of the case and your future course of action?
I cannot discuss with you the status of my case because I am not there in India. My future course of action is being taken care of for me.
Do you think that ultimately Indian court will fetch you justice?
Yes I will get justice in the Indian courts because I have the right motivation.Justice is a word that should not be used lightly and what happened to my husband is not a light matter. There was a very deep serious trauma he suffered at the time of his death – I understand. He was a very loving husband and family man who devoted all his time on his children, and whoever did this to him knew that. Can the people who did this face God?