April 16, 2012
Laxmibai Karve, a 45-year-old widow from Poona, was poisoned by her doctor on the train to Bombay.
by Randor Guy
The slow-crawling passenger night train from Poona to Bombay pulled into Victoria Terminus, Bombay after a weary stop-at-every station journey soon after dawn. A middle-aged man, Anant Chintaman Lagoo, a Poona-based doctor, arranged for a stretcher to carry a 45-year old widow. She was unconscious and obviously needed immediate medical help. Lagoo raced towards G. T. Hospital, some distance away, where the woman was admitted. It was about 5:45 a.m.
Lagoo told the hospital doctors that the lady whom he had not known before had travelled in the same compartment with him on the Poona-Bombay night train. He had gathered from the usual train journey chat that her name was Indumati Paunshe and she had a brother G. B. Deshpande, living in Calcutta. She took ill during the journey and became unconscious on board.
The lady was treated for diabetic coma. Glucose and insulin were administered along with other drugs, but she did not respond to the treatment. Nor did she regain her senses and she passed away at 11:30 a.m.
She had neither jewelry nor ornaments on her. No money either. Except the clothes she had on her person, there was nothing. She seemed a destitute. And nobody came to claim her body nor did anyone turn up to see her, of course, besides the Good Samaritan Poona doctor, Lagoo.