Former Maharashtra ATS chief Himanshu Roy kills self.

Senior Indian Police Service (IPS) officer Himanshu Roy committed suicide at his Nariman Point home on Friday afternoon. The 55-year-old shot himself in the mouth with a personal revolver at around 1.40pm, the police said.

His wife Bhavna, the sister of author Amish Tripathi, and his orderly were at home when he shot himself. Manoj Kumar Sharma, deputy commissioner of police, Zone-1, said that on hearing the gunshot, the orderly rushed to the bedroom and found Roy in a pool of blood. He rushed the officer to Bombay Hospital, where he was declared dead.

Roy was battling cancer and had been on leave since November 2016. The police found a suicide note, handwritten and signed by Roy, in which he said he was ending his life as he had been depressed about his illness, the Mumbai commissionerate said in a statement.

Roy was additional director general of police (housing). He was earlier the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) chief and the joint commissioner of police (crime). He had cracked several high-profile cases such as the murders of journalist Jyotirmoy Dey and lawyer Pallavi Purkhayastha, and was instrumental in investigating the 2013 Indian Premier League (IPL)?spot-fixing and betting scandal.

The 1988-batch IPS officer was born in Colaba in Mumbai and went to the prestigious Campion School before graduating from Mumbai’s St Xavier’s College. He tried to study medicine and follow in his father’s footsteps after Class 12, but gave it up soon and went on to become a chartered accountant before appearing for the Union Public Service Commission examination.

Roy was first posted in 1991 in Malegaon, Maharashtra, where he handled the riots that followed the demolition of the Babri Masjid the following year. Later, he served as superintendent of police in Nashik and Ahmednagar, before he was appointed deputy commissioner of police of Mumbai police’s Economic Offences Wing, traffic and zone 1. He was promoted and served as Nashik’s police commissioner between 2004 and 2007.

In 2009, he was made joint commissioner of police (crime), Mumbai, and is credited with having cracked cases such as the shooting of Arif Bael — the driver of Dawood Ibrahim’s brother Iqbal Kaskar — along with cases of murder of Dey, Purkhayastha and actress Laila Khan and her family.

Former Maharashtra ATS chief Himanshu Roy kills self
Former Maharashtra ATS chief Himanshu Roy kills self

Roy’s colleagues and neighbours were shocked by the suicide, with some of them saying they remembered him leading an active life as recently as in March. “Even till March, we had seen Roy sir going to his gym at Colaba,” a resident of the building where he lived said on condition of anonymity. “He preferred to shoot himself instead of suffering through the unbearable pain of cancer,” said another resident.

Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis offered his condolences, saying, “We have lost an efficient and senior police officer who had shouldered many key responsibilities in the state police force. Roy, who had solved many high profile cases, was known as a dynamic officer in the force. It is a loss to the force.”

Deepak Kesarkar, minister of state for home (rural), remembered Roy as a “very courageous and efficient police officer”. “He solved many crucial cases while in charge of the ATS and serving as the police chief in Nashik. A suicide note was found at his residence and further investigation will be held in the case,” he said.

Cuffe Parade police have registered a case of accidental death.

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