70-year-old man found living with brother’s body for 9 days in east Delhi

Miss Alone

Prime VIP
A 70-year-old man was found living with the decaying body of his 68-year-old brother for nine days at their Rama Garden home at Karawal Nagar in northeast Delhi.

The matter came to light when two teachers of a private school, where the deceased Rajendra Bhatnagar worked as a part-time teacher, visited his home on Monday to enquire why he was not coming to school or taking their calls since June 28.

After the teachers, Nand Kumar and Uttam Kumar, repeatedly knocked at Bhatnagar’s door, Prahlad Bhatnagar opened the door. He told them that his brother was ill and sleeping in his room.

When the two insisted on meeting Bhatnagar, Prahlad asked them to be quiet, lest they wake up his brother. “Sensing something amiss, the teachers went inside. They went to Rajendra’s room and found his maggot-infested corpse lying in the bed,” said a senior police officer.

The teachers rushed out and raised an alarm. Hearing their screams, some neighbours asked about the matter and called the police control room. The police team arrived and the body was taken to Guru Teg Bahadur hospital’s mortuary.

AK Singla, deputy commissioner of police (northeast) confirmed the incident and said that the unmarried brothers had been living alone in their Rama Garden home for several years. Their two other siblings live with their families in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. The brothers were not in touch with their siblings and other family members, the police said. Police suspect that Prahlad could be mentally disturbed.

The DCP said that after his retirement from a private company, Rajendra joined a private school as a teacher for their livelihood. His salary was their only source of income.

When the police questioned Prahlad, he said that last week, his brother complained of uneasiness. Rajendra took a medicine and went to sleep in the room in the night. When he did not wake up the next morning, Prahlad thought that his brother was very ill and he should not disturb him.

“Prahlad continued leading his normal life. For the next nine days, he cooked food for his brother and himself and ate near his body. He even slept with him on the same bed but never informed their neighbours about his brother’s death,” said the officer.

Police believe that Bhatnagar died of natural causes, though people who knew the brothers suspect that malnourishment killed him.

Locals told police that the brothers seldom interacted with anyone and always kept their doors and windows shut. The police are now trying to contact his family members who can claim his body after the autopsy.

In October last year, a 90-year-old man, Govind Ram Jethani, was found living with the decomposing corpse of his 85-year-old wife, Gopi, for four days before he came out of their home and asked a neighbour for help.