The people, even in their wildest dream would not have imagined that a strong-willed and a film actor of the calibre of Sushant Singh Rajput would commit suicide. The inevitable occurred when the Bollywood matinee idol had taken the extreme step on June 14, this year. Sources in the industry cite quite a number of reasons for the 34-year-old handsome-looking actor’s premature death. The psychiatrist Mini Rao opines that he did not take the requisite medicine on the day that led to his departure from the earth. The general opinion, however, is that Rajput could not withstand the stress and strain due to mental depression that enmeshed him for quite some time prior to his death.
That subsequent to the demise of the “Chhichhore” actor, reports are rife in media that Sushant’s death was not simpliciter a “suicide” but was in fact a case of “abetment to commit suicide” involving Bollywood biggies such as: Karan Johar, Sanjay Leela Bhansali, Salman Khan and Ekta Kapoor, as the abettors.
Lately, Advocate Sudhir Kumar Ojha got registered an F.I.R. against the alleged abettors in Bihar (Muzaffarpur). That the F.I.R. has been registered under the following Sections of the IPC:
- Section 306 (Abetment of suicide);
- Section 109 (Punishment of abetment if the act abetted is committed in consequence, and where no express provision is made for its punishment);
- Section 504 (Intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace); and,
- Section 506 (Punishment for criminal intimidation)
The F.I.R. states that the alleged abettors tried to sabotage the career of the deceased by making sure that the deceased did not get enough films to do and if at all he got films to act in then he is discreetly removed from those films. Whether or not Sushant’s suicide is a case of “abetment” will come out in blaze once the investigation is over and the charge-sheet is filed.
Unfortunately, Rajput’s former manager committed suicide three months earlier and the story goes around that leg-pulling and nepotism played around him by his detractors in the Bollywood by indulging in constant mind game, had prompted the utterly frustrated grief-stricken star to sacrifice his life, much to the chagrin and discomfiture of his family, relatives and friends. However, to dispel the suspicion around him, the Bollywood actor Salman Khan has asked his fans to help the fans of Rajput in this need of hour. The late Bollywood actor Ravindra Kumar’s wife also charged the Bollywood actor Sharukh Khan and the film producer and director, Karan Johar for their refusal to help her husband when their managers cold-shouldered him following his approach through them.
The Bollywood singer Sonu Nigam, has another interesting tale to add in the twitter when he accused the “music mafia’s nefarious designs in Bollywood, as the T.Series owner Bhushan Kumar is scuttling the prospects of some singers, composers and lyricists by forcing many producers and directors to include his team with the active connivance of his wife and actor-director. The singer, Alka Yagnik, and a few others concurred with his views, although some others had castigated Nigam for his outrageous comment. The above uncalled-for incident is not new to the film industry alone. A large number of people in other professions have also taken recourse to this extreme step, obviously due to mental depression and their inability to recover from shell-shocks and sordid state of affairs that surrounds them.
The psychiatrists, too, have a thankless job, as the country could afford only four-thousand psychiatrists for more than a billion people. How many of them are registered and coming under the purview of rules and regulations of the government are not known? It was not surprising, as the well-known psychiatrist Shruti Khare in an interview to the renowned daily Times of India, said that earlier, she used to get calls till three o’clock at night from her clients during the lockdown period due to Covid-19 pandemic imbroglio. But, after the demise of Rajput, she has been receiving several calls from people talking about how they are getting suicidal thoughts. “And since there are not many mental health professionals available, we are working throughout the day,” she rued.
The suicide of some Kollywood film actors, Fatafat Jayalaxmi and Shoba was attributed to romantic failures, whereas the sex-bomb Silk Smita had decided to bade a good-bye to her life, as she was expected to take care of her large number of relatives, who were applying pressure on her, to part with some of her hard-earned money every now and then. When the Bollywood actor, Rekha’s husband, Mukesh, an industrialist by profession, took his life, it was attributed that she had left him in the lurch after grabbing his entire property. It is also being noticed that the people who advise others to be bold enough, and not to lose their composure during adverse circumstances, are themselves falling prey and succumb to the inevitable sooner than later. They find it easier to tender advice to their depressed friends and relatives, but when it comes to their own, they realise that it is easier to preach than to follow. Rajput’s case can be cited as an instance, as the reports suggest that he constantly encouraged others in his profession to accept everything in right spirit and in proper perspective. The absence of proper counseling in time also makes some people to take the extreme decision.
The entire corporate industry was stunned when a prominent entrepreneur Siddharth committed suicide last year, although the reason cited was financial constraints and political pressure. The people in the cricket fraternity were taken aback when the former Tamil Nadu batsman and the Star Sports Television commentator, V.B. Chandrasekhar, committed suicide last year at his residence in Chennai. The reason stated was his alleged involvement in a betting related to his franchisee during the Tamil Nadu Premier League Tournament in Tamil Nadu. However, his name was cleared by the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association in their subsequent Board Meeting. The flutter was created when the former England cricketer and the well-known cricket correspondent, Peter Roebuck committed suicide nine years ago by jumping from his hotel room at Cape Town in South Africa. Sources in the cricketing circle point out to the alleged threatening letter from a lady lawyer for his advances towards her some time ago that had compelled him to resort to the untoward action. The cricket lovers who were used to the greetings, “good morning to you everybody, this is Berry Sarbadhikari reporting to you”, found that the radio cricket commentator put an end to his life by jumping from the 11th floor of his apartment at then Bombay. It was not difficult to notice that financial constraints led to his decision to leave this earth forever. The well-known American journalist Thompson committed suicide, but he made it clear that he was taking the drastic decision due to his ill-health.
The noted columnist, Chetan Bhagat is of the view that whether in Bollywood or in any other industry, bouquet and brickbats are common and the people are expected to swim and sink with it as per the prevailing situation. Chetan also reminds us of the worthwhile advice he received from the music composer and Oscar award winner, A.R. Rehman, when he famously said that “Bollywood is like a pond and if the artistes want to be on the safer side, let them go to the extreme end of the pond to take a quick bath. However, if they are enterprising enough to bath in the middle of the pond, they should be prepared to end up confronting some crocodiles.” Fair enough, as after all, there is no risk and no gain in life, as the saying goes, necessity is the mother of invention. The film maker and author Vandana Kohli is perhaps right in asserting that facing an uphill battle, Rajput should have reached out to his friends and well-wishers for concrete suggestions. Bearing that shoddy incident in mind, she has decided to write a book on mental and emotional well-being.
A section of school children are attempting suicides, as they could not withstand the failure to score more than adequate marks in classes owing to the pressure mounted by her parents. Moreover, some parents habit of comparing their children with other kids also dishearten and demoralise them when they become adolescent and not matured enough to have the wisdom and saner counsel to iron out the shortcomings and be prepared to face the success and failure with equanimity. The marital discord also forces some women to commit suicides. The reason cited in majority of the cases is that either their husbands are drunkards or do not take care of their families, or else impotent. The increase in the number of divorce cases takes place either due to extra-marital affair or the lack of sexual satisfaction that drive them to commit suicide.
A psychiatrist, who preferred to speak on a condition of anonymity, recalls a woman accompanied by her husband, put forth a condition to him that unless and until he ensures that her husband satisfies her sexually, she would not hesitate to seek divorce from him, much to the chagrin and discomfiture of her life partner, who was virtually weeping in front of them. Another psychiatrist averred that a man, who is residing in his in-laws house, sought his help, after he felt like committing suicide due to constant accusations and insults heaped on him by his wife and her father. Being a man, he could not lodge a complaint to the police, keeping the conservative set-up of the society in mind, unlike a woman, who could boldly register a case against her mother-in-law or vice-versa. The psychiatrist concerned is of the opinion that a man’s soft corner, utmost sympathy, warmth and affection towards his daughter is much more than of the son’s affinity towards his mother. Interestingly, a woman hates her husband to be possessive in his relationship with her mother-in-law, but when it comes to the man’s father-in-law, the women are so touchy, that they would not like their husbands criticising, let alone vehemently, their fathers, even if they are wicked and drunkard. However, a man rarely interfere in the quarrel between his daughter and son-in-law, unless the delicate and sensitive relationship between a woman and her mother-in-law.
The psychiatrist concerned also asserted that often the men are accused as chauvinist, but when it comes to the crunch, a section of womenfolk are no less than them in berating their husbands. The hypocrite society, reasons, another psychiatrist, Madan, would not tolerate a prominent male personality insulting his wife and would, without an iota of doubt, treat him as a male chauvinist, but when a popular female personality trade her tirade against her husband, the benefit of doubt would be given to her by the society by charging her husband as “suffering from inferiority complex and ego-problem”. The woes of men are not often reflected, as for instance, on any woman, says a psychiatrist, who preferred to be flattered, and in that context, she is the least interested and least bothered when her life partner is treated with disdain and addressed as a tinge of sarcasm by her relatives and friends circle. For instance, the Carnatic singer, Nityashri’s husband Mahadevan could not bear the constant criticism heaped on him by some people that he was surviving at the behest of his famous wife. With the result, the teased and tormented man felt that enough is enough and decided to quit this world.
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