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Vogue covergirl Raudha Athif’s alleged suicide investigated

Photo: Twitter

A 60 Minutes investigation has uncovered possible evidence that a Vogue cover model found dead in her dorm room in Bangladesh was murdered and did not kill herself.

Maldives native Raudha Athif, 21, reportedly hanged herself with a scarf from a ceiling fan at the Islami Bank Medical College in Rajshahi in March.

But while police claim her death points to suicide, her father and forensic experts told 60 Minutes it was murder.

“All the facts show she was murdered but no real investigation has been done,” Raudha’s father Mohamed said.

“I want to know the truth behind my daughter’s death. Who killed her and why?

“Someone is lying.”

Raudha Athif

Police say Raudha committed suicide, but her father and a forensic expert say otherwise. Photo: Twitter

Australian forensic pathologist Professor Joe DuFlou agreed, stating that marks and bruising around her neck paint a more sinister picture.

After a rushed 30-minute autopsy, police told Raudha’s family she killed herself, and that the excess marks on her neck were birth marks.

But her father and Professor DuFlou rejected that claim, saying a hand and a belt had been used.

“I’d have grave doubts that that ligature caused those ligature marks. It just doesn’t match,” Professor DuFlou said.

“To me, the appearance of those bruises, marks of some type or other, looked very similar to fingers has caused bruising.”

Raudha grew up with her family in the Maldives but was forced to leave to fulfil her dream to become a doctor, receiving a scholarship to the Islami Bank Medical College in western Bangladesh.

But it was one photograph that changed her life forever, when the “Maldivian girl with aqua blue eyes” went viral, leading to a front cover shoot with Vogue magazine.

According to Mr Athif, it attracted unwanted attention in the strict Muslim country of Bangladesh.

Mr Athif said his daughter took precautions and wore clothes to suit the strict Muslim dress code, but was allegedly shamed for her now booming modelling career.

He said she wanted to be known for more than her looks and aspired to become a doctor.

“She wanted to take care of people,” he said.

Raudha Athif

Raudha’s father Mohamed said he will stay in Bangladesh until the truth of his daughter’s death is revealed. Photo: 60 Minutes

“Some people were saying that she belonged to Muslim country, Islamic country and she should not do that.”

Raudha was to join her family in Australia and to finish her medical studies in Perth next year before her death.

Raudha’s best friend a person of interest

Mr Athif filed a civil complaint to the Rajshahi magistrate’s court following Raudha’s death, ordering a criminal investigation and another autopsy to be taken – which he won.

Since his efforts and seven months after the tragic death of Raudha, her best friend, Sirat Parveen, has become a person of interest.

60 Minutes stated Ms Parveen was the last person to see her alive and the first person to see her dead, linking her to suspicious activity on Raudha’s Instagram account.

Days after her death, Raudha’s account unfollowed two people, one of those being Ms Parveen, before the profile was deleted altogether.

“I think that that could be beautiful package like that, when you have that whole jealously in others, sometimes that brings out a very real motive,” Criminal and human right lawyer Rabia Siddique told 60 Minutes.

If you or anyone you know needs help, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14

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