Israeli tourist found dead in hotel room in India, no foul play suspected

Natan Levi, 32, was found by tour guide in a Himalayan region of northeastern India; police believe he died of natural causes; Foreign Ministry working to assist family

Natan Levi, who died while travelling in India (Courtesy)
Natan Levi, who died while travelling in India (Courtesy)

An Israeli tourist was found dead in his hotel room in India, the Foreign Ministry said Friday.

Local reports said the man, later identified as Natan Levi, 32, was found Wednesday in his room near the Himalayan mountain of Sandakphu in northeastern India by a guide he had hired when he failed to show up for the tour.

The mountains near the famed tea plantations of Darjeeling are a popular destination for trekking.

Local police believe he died of natural causes and foul play was not suspected.

“There is no sign of injury on his body. Prima facie it seems like a natural death. However, the exact cause can be confirmed after we get the report of the post-mortem,” Santosh Nimbalkar, the superintendent of police in Darjeeling said in a statement.

The Foreign Ministry said Levi’s family had been informed and the embassy in New Delhi was working to assist them and bring the body home. It said they were in close contact with local officials.

The Sandakphu mountain in West Bengal, India (Wikimedia commons /By solarshakti – Flickr, CC BY 2.0)

Levi’s father Ilan told Channel 12 that the day before he died he had trekked up to a height of some 3500 meters (11,500 feet.)

“In the morning when the guide went to wake him to continue the trek, he found him dead with an open book next to his bed,” Ilan Levi said, adding that they believed he may have suffered a heart issue, but were waiting for the results of the autopsy to be sure.

Levi said his son traveled widely and loved to hike and trek and had been healthy. “No one can believe this happened.”

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