A STUDENT who died after taking a sleeping pill overdose at a Wigan hotel had tried to blackmail a man into having a romantic relationship with her, an inquest heard.
Ashwini Karnatakapu, 25, collapsed in a room at Number 15, Upper Dicconson Street, Swinley, after taking more than 100 sleeping tablets. Her body was discovered by cleaners on May 12.
Bolton Coroner’s Court heard how Miss Karnatakapu had travelled to the UK from her native India in 2009 to complete a course at Wigan and Leigh College.
At the time of her death, she was living in London to complete a masters degree in human resource management. While in London, Miss Karnatakapu became re-acquainted with Rahul Moosani – a friend she had first met in India.
Mr Moosani, who was studying in Coventry, told how he became aware that she was besotted with him. She even sent in an application for a job at Tesco on Mr Moosani’s behalf - without his knowledge.
Despite being taken aback, Mr Moosani accepted the job and moved into a shared house with Miss Karnatakapu and some other friends.
But Miss Karnatakapu became increasingly possessive, even though he had a steady girlfriend at the time. She even went to the lengths of checking his email messages, arranging to bump into him on his travels and telling her colleagues that she was in a relationship with him.
On one occasion, she threatened to kill herself before taking an overdose of herbal sleeping tablets.
Mr Moosani said he had no idea why she travelled up to Wigan on May 9.
Police checks of her internet use revealed that she had browsed five different suicide websites just days before her death.
A post mortem examination revealed the number of sleeping pills that Miss Karnatakapu had ingested on May 12 was approximately double the recognised fatal level.
Deputy Coroner Peter Watson recorded a verdict that Miss Karnatakapu took her own life.
The verdict came in the same week as a new multi-agency task force was formed in Wigan aimed at preventing suicides, the number of which locally is one of the highest in the region.
Anyone in distress and needing to talk is urged to contact the Samaritans in confidence on 01942 492222.