While our national capital has the dubious distinction of being the ‘Rape capital’ of our country (or is it World?), our own beautiful city is getting the name ‘Suicide capital’ of our country. No day passes without the dailies reporting 3-4 suicides in the city. The range of ages of the ‘suiciders’ starts from as low as 9 years and encompasses all ages (except the very old) the reasons being mostly dowry harassment, examination stress, marital and monetary problems and ‘love failures’.
The police have to spend a lot of their time in determining whether it is a case of suicide or murder. One very easy way of getting it tagged as suicide for the murderers apparently is, to murder and hang the dead body silently. Disposal by burial or burning is much more messy and leaves a lot of tell tale clues that give rise to many uncomfortable questions.
A reliable source of rumour says that the police are planning many a step to cut down the suicide rate and thus their workload.
As a first step, they plan to abolish all ceiling fans in houses and other places. Their argument is no ceiling fan, no suicide. Nothing strange about this. In fact it was one of our brilliant police brains that thought of making helmets compulsory for two wheeler riders instead of disciplining the wild traffic on the road. Why, for that matter even our politicians have bizarre solutions for the rape problem. Instead of meting out drastic punishment to the rapists as in Middle East, they want women to go back to the Victorian era in their attire, as if young victims of rape, say 4 to 6 years of age, tempted the rapists with their ravishing curves and costumes (Rape? Go for child marriages. Acid throwing? Stop selling acid).
Secondly, the police force intends sending circulars to all chemists and druggists to sell dummy sleeping tablets to their customers who are not obvious cases of insomnia. The fake customers can even be asked to produce updated prescription from a few selected medical practitioners or arbitrarily the druggist could judge from the demeanor of the customer if he needs the sedative really and dispense the fake pills to the undeserved.
Thirdly, the police plan to publish standard proforma for people dying unnatural deaths in the place of a suicide note. This would be made available online, which the future suicider can fill and (snail) mail it to the police station after quoting the PAN number and attaching copies of Aadhar, ration and voter’s cards(Sending it by e mail is risky as it may reach before the act). In case the suicider cannot do so, the next of kin who is not a suspected/alleged/deemed murderer can fill in the proforma and send it to police and thus reduce their work.
In addition to all these measures police can also have public brainstorming sessions and invite suggestions from the public (such as abolish examinations) by which the suicide rate can be brought down or investigations are expedited.
So, if the social scientists and NGOs are crowing about counseling and helplines, the police are keen to bring about practical measures to tackle the suicide menace. All our best wishes for their well intentioned endeavors.