Sonali Phogat's Death Case: Two Accused Arrested By Goa Police; The Story So Far

Sonali Phogat, 42, hailing from Haryana was declared dead on August 23 at St Anthony Hospital at Anjuna in North Goa. Initially, the cause of death was reported to be a suspected heart attack. Now it has turned into an alleged murder case.


Sonali Phogat

Two accused, Sudhir Sagwan and Sukhwinder Singh, were produced before a local court in Mapusa town where they were remanded to 10-day police custody in Haryana BJP leader and actor Sonali Phogat’s death case. 

Sonali Phogat, 42, was declared dead on August 23 at St Anthony Hospital at Anjuna in North Goa. Initially, the cause of death was reported to be a suspected heart attack. Later, a post-mortem report revealed “multiple blunt force injuries” on her body.

Following her death, the Goa Police registered a murder case to probe her death.

The story so far:

Family registers complaint 

On Wednesday, Phogat’s brother Rinku Dhaka filed a complaint accusing her personal assistant Sudhir Sangwan and his aide Sukhvinder of killing Phogat. 


Initially, Phogat’s family was not willing to consent to a post-mortem. However, they agreed to the same later and the post-mortem was conducted at the Goa Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) in Bambolin on Thursday.

They refused to conduct a second round of post-mortem and left Goa with her mortal remains on the same day. 

Post-mortem report

The report read that “there are multiple blunt force injuries on the body” and added that the manner of death “is for the investigation officer to ascertain”.

According to reports, doctors at GMCH reserved the cause of death pending chemical analysis, histopathology and serological reports. 


Arrests of accused 

Goa Police on Thursday pressed a charge of murder against two associates, Sudhir Sagwan and Sukhwinder Singh, of BJP leader Sonali Phogat soon after an autopsy was conducted on her body.

Section 302 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code has been added to the case related to the death of the 42-year-old leader.

On Friday, police said that CCTV footage showed Phogat dancing at a club with Sudhir and Wasi. The accused was seen forcefully making Phogat consume a substance, after which she is visibly seen losing control of herself. 

Rinku Dhaka said that Sudhir Sagwan had taken Phogat to Goa on the pretext of a film shoot, however, no such shoot was scheduled. Dhaka accused Sagwan of previously sexually assaulting Phogat by spiking her drink and food. 

The police on Friday said Sagwan and Singh allegedly mixed some "obnoxious substance" in water and forced Phogat to drink it while partying at Curlies restaurant on the intervening night of August 22 and 23, adding they have been charged with murder.

The motive behind the alleged murder of Phogat could be "economic interest", a senior police officer had said. 

Drug link

The Goa Police on Saturday detained a North Goa restaurant owner and a suspected peddler, who had allegedly supplied drugs to the two accused arrested in the Sonali Phogat murder case.

The suspected drug peddler, Dattaprasad Gaonkar, was detained from Anjuna after the accused duo "confessed" in their statement that they had procured drugs from him.Another man who has been detained is identified as Edwin Nunes, the owner of Curlies restaurant, where Phogat was partying late at night on August 22 before her death under mysterious circumstances. 


Congress demands CBI probe

The Congress on Saturday demanded a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into the alleged murder of Phogat claiming the police were trying to hush up the matter. 

“Many politicians said that her death was due to a heart attack. But finally, it has been revealed as murder. There is more to this murder than meets the eye and every angle needs to be investigated. These kinds of cases need to be investigated by the CBI to unravel the truth," said Goa Leader of Opposition Michael Lobo.

(with PTI inputs)