A 35-year-old employee of a well-known Italian bar-and-restaurant in Khar died on Wednesday evening immediately after participating in a wine-tasting session.
Pukhrimayum Akhtar Hussain, who was training to become a captain at the Yellow Bar All Day at Khar, died a few hours after participating in a wine-tasting workshop on Wednesday evening.
While a post-mortem is yet to be conducted due to pending panchnama reports, forensic experts said that, prima facie, the death could be due to poisoning from chemical reactions. Colleagues said Hussain had tasted around 10 different samples and had a full glass of wine after the workshop ended. The Khar police are investigating the case after registering an Accidental Death Report.
In his statement to the Khar Police Station, another employee of the bar, Rohit Pandey, said Hussain, who is from Manipur, sampled some 10 wines during the workshop, which was from 4 pm to 6 pm.
The plush eatery is helmed by the former Mezzo Mezzo chef Davide Cananzi. He runs it with restaurateurs Ramona Narang and Nicky Bedi, who used to run the famous Yellow Tree Café in Bandra.
It has among the most extensive bar and wine menus in the city.
Soon after the workshop, sources said Hussain was found at the gate of the restaurant in an inebriated state. The security personnel informed the managers, who asked Hussain to rest inside the bar. After sometime, they realised that he had become unconscious and was not waking up despite their repeated attempts. They rushed Hussain to Bhabha Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival. The body was then taken to Cooper Hospital for post-mortem.
“We have registered an ADR and investigations are going on. We are waiting for the forensic experts’ opinion,” Khar Senior Police Inspector Dattatray Bhargude told mid-day.
Forensic experts on the other hand, after accessing the statements of the bar employees, said that prima facie, it seemed like a case of poisoning due to chemical reaction. They said the exact cause of death will only be ascertained after a detailed chemical analysis. They are awaiting a go-ahead from the police, who are yet to complete the panchnama.
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