The CBI has taken over investigation into the mysterious death of a 22-year-old Finnish tourist, Felix Dahl, in Goa nearly three years ago, officials said in Delhi.
Felix Dahl was found dead with multiple skull fractures and brain haemorrhage on an interior road in Canacona, South Goa, on January 28, 2015.
The case was handed over to the CBI by the Bombay High Court which noted that the quality and manner of probe by the Goa Police was “not indicative of a fair and impartial investigation”.
The police had claimed that Felix Dahl was fond of acrobatics such as static jumping and cartwheels, and fell after he lost balance resulting in accidental death.
Felix Dahl’s mother Minna Pirhonen approached the Bombay High Court seeking a probe into the death by the CBI.
Dissatisfied with the police investigation, she had got a second autopsy done in Finland and also sought opinion of American pathologist Dr Edward N Willey sending him all the reports.
Dr Willey suggested that the nature of injuries does not suggest that Felix died of a fall, but a victim of violent assault.
Speaking to PTI from Finland, Minna Pirhonen, a biologist herself at the University of Helsinki, said she is hopeful of a fair investigation from the CBI which will bring culprits to the book.
She had also raised suspicion on the conduct of one local, Lenslood Fernandes, with whom Felix Dahl was last seen on January 27.
“My son is one of the many tourists who have been found dead in Goa. I hope the CBI will be able to solve the killing of my son,” she said.
In scathing comments on the Goa Police, the bench of Justices Prithviraj K Chavan and NM Jamdar had said the nature of injuries and the circumstances indicated a strong possibility of homicide.
“In the entire investigation papers, there is no indication at all that angle of homicide is considered. Why not is the moot question,” it said.
He said Felix Dahl was not found dead at the bottom of a cliff to demonstrate death from a fall. His body was found on a tarred road, with border stones.
“The skull is one of the hardest bone in the human body. For the skull to have five life-threatening fractures with haemorrhage, it was likely to be a result of a violent force. What we find surprising is that this theory was not even considered as possible,” the bench said.
It had said it was possible that Felix Dahl was assaulted elsewhere and his body was quietly put on the ground, or that Felix Dahl was assaulted with a blunt object on the spot, or that he could have been assaulted with any of the stone lying on the spot, or that it could be that he was made unconscious and killed.
“The local police have chosen to steer the investigation clear of the angle of homicide, even though it was one of the strong hypothesis,” the bench said.