Chittoor: Airhostess-Turned-Model Sangeeta Chatterjee, held for red sander smuggling, attempted suicide in the jail premises on Thursday by consuming toilet cleaner.
Her condition is stated to be critical. It may be recalled that a local court in Pakala town in Chittoor district had sent Sangeeta Chatterjee to 14 days judicial custody in May 2017 for her alleged involvement in a red sanders smuggling case besides illegal arms dealing. Police sources stated that Sangeeta (27) was wanted in at least four cases lodged in the last three years. The police charged her with spreading smuggling network in six states in India and other countries including China and Japan.
Sangeeta is a close associate of notorious red sanders smuggler Markondas Lakshmanan (31), who hails from Chennai but settled in Kolkata five years ago. Two years ago, Lakshmanan developed intimacy with Sangeeta and both started living together. She had obtained interim bail from Alipore court in Kolkata in early May when the Chittoor police raided her residence there, seizing her bank lockers and accounts which showed suspicious transactions with overseas agencies worth over several crores of rupees.
However, the Kolkata court directed Sangeeta to appear before the Chittoor court on May 18. But Sangeeta obtained extension of the interim bail on health grounds. Despite six legal summons, she did not appear before the Chittoor court. In December, the court issued a non-bail-able warrant against her. The Chittoor police deputed special teams about 28 times to Kolkata and Nagaland to hunt for her, but she could not be traced.
Police said Lakshmanan, who started his career as a mechanic, entered into the red sanders smuggling in 2012 and amassed wealth worth hundreds of crores of rupees in Chennai and Kolkata. He was arrested by the Chittoor police in 2013 in connection with red sanders smuggling and was sent to Kadapa jail under the PD Act. Later, while on bail, he came in contact with Sangeeta who had started modelling after quitting as an airhostess. Sangeeta had reportedly married a pilot but separated later.