25th June, 2016. It was a Saturday morning. I was at home and was planning weekend with my friends of whatsapp. While typing the message in F.R.I.E.N.D.S group, I got a call from one of the fellow commuters. My workplace is 80 kms away from my native city. So I commute to that place via train. As I commute daily via train, a group is formed of eight people who commute via same train. We share seats, eat snacks together & share our experiences to pass the time. "Hello Paresh, Vermaji ne suicide kar diya." I heard those words when I picked up that call. My mind was in the plan of movie so it took some time to take in those words. "Kya?" I was shaken a bit and was not able to believe what Darshan bhai said. "Vermaji ne suicide kiya hai." He repeated that again. I was still not ready to believe it. "Kaun? Ishwar Verma?" I asked him again with Vermaji's first name to confirm that Darshan bhai is talking about the person who commute with us.
"Haan. Kal raat woh walk karne riverfront gaye and there he jumped in the river." Darshan bhai told me the whole story. I asked time and place of cremation and hung up the call. After the call, Vermaji's pictures were flashing in front of my eyes as my mind had become a dvd player and it was playing a movie of his memories, his talks, his walking style, his sitting style etc. Vermaji was a distrcit registrar in state government and I have had met him a day before only in the train. He was commuting with us since last couple of years. He didn't allow anyone to get the feeling of what he was going through. He was normal. There wasn't even a single sign on his face of worry, frustration, disappointment, suffering or guilt. Thus I was thinking what led him to take that step? Why he decided to quit and gave away his life?
Next morning, I read the news in the newspaper after coming back home from Vermaji's cremation. In that article there was a picture of his suicide note.
Politicians has put me in trouble.
They have forcefully taken my signatures in one of the corruption cases.
They want to put all the blame on me.
A police officer is torturing me mentally since last one and a half month.
They have taken away a father from my children and a husband from my innocent wife.
I was shocked to read that note because in train while commuting, he used to talk about his retirement in January, 2017 and promotion he is going to get. Vermaji was pretty satisfied and happy with his job that's why that note shocked me. He seemed to be a non corrupted officer and tag of corruption was not acceptable to him. So the tag of corruption and mental torture forced him to take that step.
I am sharing this story because I just finished reading a book called The Story of A Suicide. Vermaji's story established a connection between me and that novel. The Story of A Suicide is a novel written by Sriram Ayer keeping today's youngsters or youth in mind. It revolves around four characters Hari, Charu, Sam and Mani. Sam is a rich tech geek who had just completed his pursuing his studies, Charu is beautiful, charming and blunt girl with very strong views, Hari is very conservative and introvert type of a guy who has just completed his graduation and Mani is a scholar who is trying to get used to english language. All these characters get together in one of the reputed colleges of Chennai for further studies. They get into a web of love, passion, revenge and deceit and it ends with a suicide. It is a very gripping story. I am not an avid reader. I hardly complete any novel. I leave them in between and forget about it but this story was really interesting. It had the capacity to hold me till the end. If the novel is interesting and has the capacity to hold me till the end then I complete it in one day. And I completed The Story of A Suicide in just one day.
I hear or read about suicides almost every day. Suicides specially of the people who are in their twenties or thirties and I can relate to them as I am in the same age group. We are expressive, passionate, independent, fearless and fame hungry. And to achieve that fame, we part our ways from our family and the people who love us. We are living in the world which is not easy. It makes unreasonable demands. Therefore, we all are struggling in the fields like education, relationships, jobs etc. We all are fighting our fights in this big bad world. So rather than fighting with each other, we should be a support to each other. Everyone feels lonely at some stage of life. So rather than making life more difficult, we should stand by each other. We might not share our struggles with everyone but we should surely share a joke and make people laugh. According to me, we can deal with this kind of life only by spreading happiness in each other's lives. So be a reason for someone's smile and make this life bearable and liveable.
Image source: http://www.storyofasuicide.com/index.html