Australia launches probe into sailor’s death in Mumbai

Mumbai: According to Indian police officials, Australian Defence Department has launched a probe into the death of a naval sailor on board its warship while it was docked in Mumbai.

The internal investigation service team landed in Mumbai and began investigations into the incident. The 28-year-old sailor died from gunshot wounds on the board of HMAS Toowoomba warship of the Royal Australian Navy in Mumbai Harbour on Monday.

The male sailor was alone in his cabin at the time of the incident. Sources said it was not clear whether the shot was accidental or self-inflicted. No one else was injured in the incident.

“A meeting with senior police officials was also held. The Australian’s internal investigation service team will submit a detailed report on the investigation to Mantralaya (secretariat) in a day or two. Based on this report, an appropriate mention would be made in the police diary. As of now, this incident was not recorded in the police station,” said Pandurang Dhoke, senior inspector at Yellow Gate police station.

The sailor’s body has been preserved by the Australian defence, Dhoke added.

The seventh Anzac class frigate was on its way back home after conducting six-month anti-piracy vigil off the North African waters. It has a crew of about 190 officers and sailors. Aanchored at Mumbai Harbour on October 21, the warship is yet to leave India.