Within a week, two unusual incidents have taken social media by storm in restive Kashmir. While a young man captured his own video moments before committing suicide, a boy was killed by a speeding train when he was trying to take a selfie on the railway track. Both these incidents happened in the summer capital of Srinagar.
Ganesh Kumar Mehra, a 31-year-old businessman, who co-owned Krishna Dhaba, a famous vegetarian eatery, shocked the social media when he posted his own video before ending his life. The police said that the man shot the two-minute video on his smartphone and subsequently shared it on Whatsapp with his friends before hanging himself from a ceiling fan.
The man in his bedroom is seen on the camera lens in the backdrop of the ceiling fan, which has a cloth in place, presumably for hanging.
Mehra, who was believed to be in abbreviated condition, has addressed his uncle and business partner to convey that he was fed up of life. “I have not committed a mistake. Whenever I try to do something good you (uncle) misunderstand me.”
The man is seen claiming on the video that it would take courage to end his life but that he was going to hang himself. A few hours later, his body was found hanging from the same ceiling fan.
The video, first posted on February 18, has gone viral on Youtube and social networks. Superintendent of Police Sheikh Faisal, who is investigating the case, says that it seems to be a “pure case of suicide.” “Though inquest proceedings have been initiated and a postmortem report is yet to arrive, he was probably intoxicated and used a smartphone to capture his last moments,” the SP told InUth.
Faisal says earlier such people would mostly leave behind a suicide note. “Now these cases seem to be making use of technology. But one thing that looks clear is that this video is not a dying declaration, something which could hint any possible murder angle.”
While this video was doing the rounds, news surfaced that a teenage boy taking a selfie on the railway track was mowed down by a train. This incident took place at Nowgam railway station on February 23.
The Police says that 14-year old Adnan Mehraj Mir of Khanyar died instantly. “He (Adnan) was taking a selfie when he was hit by a train. Though railway police cautioned him by whistling, he apparently did not hear them,” said Muhammad Ayoub, SHO Railway Police Nowgam. Pictures of his dead body are also going viral on social media as “Kashmir’s first selfie death.”
The Police claim that both the incidents are first of its kind in the Valley, which is otherwise mainly in headlines for unrest or militancy. “Both these cases have opened new vistas of police investigations in Kashmir.”