Poison in Arali caused woman’s death by cardiac arrest, says police report

On April 28, Surya collapsed at the airport and passed away while undergoing treatment. Photo: Special arrangement.

Harippad (Alapuzha): The preliminary report by the police indicates that Surya Surendran, a Haripad native who collapsed and died at Nedumbassery airport, lost her life after ingesting poison from the Arali (Oleander) plant, which caused cardiac arrest. She was en route to the UK to start a new job as a nurse when the incident happened.

Before her journey, Surya had plucked a leaf or flower from the Arali plant near her home and chewed it. Although samples of the Arali leaf and flower, along with Surya’s blood sample, were sent to a laboratory in Thiruvananthapuram three weeks ago, the results are still awaited. The police can confirm whether Arali's poison caused her death only after receiving these results. The final report will be submitted after the lab results are obtained.

On April 28, Surya collapsed at the airport and passed away while undergoing treatment. Following this, the police registered a case of unnatural death and recorded the statements of the doctors who treated her. Surya had told the doctors that before starting her journey, she had casually plucked the leaf and flower of a plant and chewed them while speaking on her cellphone. However, she immediately spat them out. Upon examination, it was determined that the plant was the Arali plant.

The viscera were sent to the laboratory in Thiruvananthapuram after the autopsy was conducted at the Alapuzha Medical College Hospital. Haripad SHO K Abhilash Kumar, who is investigating the case, stated that there is nothing suspicious about Surya’s death. Experts have already pointed out that the leaves and flowers of the Arali plant are poisonous and can be fatal. Following this incident, many Devaswom Boards in the state have banned the use of Arali in Nivedya.

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