Indian waiter `hangs` himself on ship in UK

Goa-origin Sumith Gawas, 22, killed himself in his cabin on the P&O Cruises ship Arcadia while it was in dock at the port, an inquest into his death was told in Southampton.

Last Updated: Sep 22, 2010, 18:06 PM IST

London: An Indian waiter on a cruse ship docked in Southampton allegedly hanged himself after being caught stealing cash from a collection given as tip for the ship`s staff by passengers.

Goa-origin Sumith Gawas, 22, killed himself in his cabin on the P&O Cruises ship Arcadia while it was in dock at the port, an inquest into his death was told in Southampton.

Hailing from Collem, Goa, Gawas was a junior waiter at a self-service restaurant on the ship when he was caught emptying the tips box by colleagues in the early hours of July 16 this year.

He was confronted by a supervisor, Dharmendra Jadhav, and he tried to hide 140 pounds in notes he had taken but they were found nearby.

After being confronted, Gawas was then told to go to his cabin. According to the details of his death narrated at the inquest, Gawas` cabin mate Joel Fernandes left for work in the morning but came back later to get some cigarettes and found Gawas.

Security officer for P&O Cruises Adrian Prangnell told the hearing that Gawas had 800 pounds in his possession, which was more than he would have earned.

He said it appeared the waiter had taken from the box on more than one occasion.

"Sumith took his own life. He did so as a direct consequence of being discovered stealing monies from the tips box," he said.

Deputy Southampton Coroner Gordon Denson recorded a verdict of suicide and said the shame of the theft had clearly led to him taking his life.

The police ruled out any foul play.

PTI