Family break silence after 'beautiful and brilliant' EY accountant's tragic death

·4-min read

The heartbroken family of a young woman who plunged to her death from a Sydney building last week say they are struggling to come to terms with her death.

Aishwarya Venkatachalam, 27, an Ernst & Young employee, was out with work colleagues late last month just hours before her death.

On August 26, the group attended at The Ivy bar close to the EY office on George Street before Ms Venkatachalam was seeing "crying her eyes out" in a carpark.

Ms Venkatachalam's uncle, Nachur Balasubramanian told Daily Mail Australia she was both "beautiful" and "brilliant".

He said she came from a very supportive family and she was her parents' only daughter. Her family is still seeking answers in relation to her untimely death.

Ms Venkatachalam completed her education in India. She was married and had relocated to Australia.

Aishwarya Venkatachalam smiles for a photo.
Aishwarya Venkatachalam died in the early hours of August 27. Her uncle described her as "brilliant". Source: LinkedIn via Daily Mail Australia

Women comfort crying employee

It has been reported Ms Venkatachalam was removed from the bar on Friday night just after 5pm.

The Australian reported that CCTV footage shows she returned to the office by herself between 7pm and 7.30pm and she moved between floors. At 8pm, she spoke with her husband was who flying out to Sydney that same night from Singapore.

It is not clear what Ms Venkatachalam was doing between 8pm and later that night when a group of women saw her at a carpark near her office.

Speaking to Daily Mail Australia, one of the women said the 27-year-old was very upset, saying she was having a panic attack and while she had been drinking, she wasn't drunk.

One of the women said they had seen her talking to a cleaner who was trying to help her but eventually walked off.

The group approached Ms Venkatachalam just before midnight. The three women insisted they were trying to help her and wanted to make sure she would get home safe.

An office building with Ernst & Young (EY) logo is seen
The EY employee was reportedly seen in the George Street building at around 7pm on Friday. Source: AAP, file

One of the women told the Daily Mail she repeatedly said she had been kicked out of a work function. She also said she had left her keys in the office but she wasn't allowed in the building, despite having her work pass.

It is believed Ms Venkatachalam fell from the 10th floor of the EY building shortly afterwards.

At 12.20am on Saturday, August 27, emergency services were called to George Street in Sydney CBD "following a concern for a welfare report". There, a body of a woman was located.

"An investigation into the incident is underway and a report will be prepared for the Coroner," NSW Police said in a statement to Yahoo News Australia.

"The death of the woman is not being treated as suspicious and no further comment will be made in relation to this matter."

Police were called to George Street in Sydney's CBD at around 12.20am on August 27. Source: Google Maps
Police were called to George Street in Sydney's CBD at around 12.20am on August 27. Source: Google Maps

EY conducts 'wide-ranging' review

Last week, in a statement to Yahoo News Australia, EY CEO and Regional Managing Partner David Larocca said the company was "saddened" by Ms Venkatachalam's death.

"We are assisting the police with their ongoing investigation, which has confirmed there were no suspicious circumstances," he said.

"Our hearts go out the family and we have been in contact to offer our support and condolences."

Staff at EY have been offered counselling and a "comprehensive and wide-ranging" review is being conducted internally.

The review will look at the "health and safety, security, social events" in relation to staff.

Yahoo News Australia is not suggesting Ms Venkatachalam's death is linked to the work culture at EY.

Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636, Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.

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