A couple discovered dead in their bed were buried in the same grave on Monday in the presence of scores of family members and well-wishers. The cause of their mysterious death is yet to be determined.
The bodies of Qasim Shahid, 47, and his wife Razeena Ibrahim, 42, was found Sunday by their six-year-old daughter in their rented fifth floor apartment in Maafannu ward of Malé.
Razeena’s sister, Rizna Ibrahim, opened the couple’s locked bedroom door with a spare key and sent their daughter in to wake them up when they failed to come out of their room by noon, according to their landlord Ahmed Shafeeu.
When Rizna could not revive her sister, she called other relatives and the police.
“The couple looked peaceful, like they were asleep. Shahid’s left hand was under Razeena’s head and his right hand was on her right shoulder,” said Shafeeu who entered the room with the police. “The room was very clean, and the bed sheets looked un-rumpled. There weren’t any pillows on the floor or anything that looked out of the ordinary.”
The couple’s death has sparked an outpouring of grief on social media.
They have been described as a “happy, loving and religious couple.”
While some news outlets have reported that signs of froth were found on their mouths, other reports suggested that the pair died of natural causes.
The police spokesman, Superintendent Ahmed Athif, said Qasim and Razeena’s family did not want carry out an autopsy to determine the cause of death, but the police have obtained samples for forensic tests.
“In this particular case, the family did not want an autopsy, and the police have chosen not to do them based on that and on what we know so far.”
The police do not carry out autopsies for all suspicious deaths, he said, adding that bodies have to be flown abroad for such tests. Even if family members did not wish for an autopsy, the police are authorised to carry them out.
But “We base the decision to do autopsies on circumstance. We only do them if we determine that the case needs further information,” he said.
Qasim, who worked as a captain for tourism firm, Universal Enterprises, was in Malé on Saturday for his day off. In addition to their daughter, the couple leave behind two young men, 20 years and 15 years.