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SHOCKING: Two more Indians commit suicide in Ajman, Dubai

posted May 21, 2012, 11:12 AM by ABDUL SALEEM saleem

Shop owner, who tried to kill himself, saved by friend’s intervention

    VM Sathish
Published Monday, May 21, 2012

Two more Indians have ended their lives in Dubai and Ajman.

21-year-old Nikhil Soman Nair from Kerala state’s Pathanamthitta district, was found dead seven days after he landed in UAE to work for a printing press owned by another Keralite.

According to social worker Ashraf, the youth was brought to UAE to work in a company managed by one of his neighbours back home. He is the only son of his father who married thrice.

“This is the latest suicide to be reported from the Indian community. Nikhil was found hanging from a ceiling fan in his room in Ajman. He wanted to have lunch one hour before the company’s lunch break. He was behaving strangely, came out of the company’s premises and took the house’s key from a colleague. He said he will go to his room to rest, but when the new employee did not return to work, his accommodation nearby was searched where his body was found,” said Ashraf.

Social workers said the newly recruited man could have been suffering from home sickness. “We called Ajman Police to remove the body from the accommodation. His body will be sent home on Monday night on an Emirates flight.”

Another Indian worker has reportedly found dead, suspected to be a suicide, as he could not go home for his wedding. “He lived in Satwa. He was to get married, but he could not go home for the wedding.  He is suspected to have committed suicide. The body is yet to be sent home,” said a social worker familiar with the case.

The number of Indians committing suicide in the UAE has been going up. Many individuals and families suffering from mental depression and financial distress have ended their lives.

At an interactive session on suicides jointly organised by the social organisation Sevanam and the Indian Media Forum last Friday, three desperate Indians, who had unsuccessfully attempted suicide, came forward seeking help.

A tailor from Ajman, hailing from Kanjangadu, Kerala, said he attempted suicide two times because he could not pay back the capital and the huge interest charged by Ajman-based money lenders. Many distressed Indians, who participated in the Sevanam-Indian Media Forum session on suicides, have sought legal, moral and material support for coming out of the mess. All the participants were unanimous that the Indian embassy and consulate should take more steps to address the problem and that the Indian government should use part of the welfare fund for helping financially and emotionally distressed Indian expatriates in the UAE.

“I used to work as a tailor and I decided to expand my business by purchasing a tailoring shop which was for sale. I spend Dh14,000 to purchase the shop from the sponsor, but after I paid the money and started business, another person came forward and claimed the ownership of the same shop. I was in shocked but could not do anything. When he pestered and insulted me in front of my customers, I decided to take a loan of Dh14,000 from a money lender in Ajman. They charged Dh1,400 per month as interest alone. I used to pay Dh1,400 per month as interest alone from a total income of Dh2000 to Dh2500. Even after paying Dh1,400 every month for two years, the principal amount was outstanding,” the indebted tailor said.

“I borrowed indiscriminately from friends, relatives and others back home to run the business and to treat my mother who suffered a major accident. I sold my property back home to settle some of the dues, but since I am frequently humiliated and insulted by lenders including my friends, I decided to end my life. However, I was released from the death trap by my roommate who lent me some money,” he said.

“I was about to sleep but felt something was wrong. My roommate was quietly moving the table near to the ceiling fan and was preparing to hang himself using a curtain cloth. When I suddenly switched on the light, I found him trying to hang from the ceiling fan. I stopped immediately him and his life was saved. I told him there is a way out of his problems,” said his roommate, who works in Dubai Media City.

Two other people with similar stories approached Indian social workers seeking help. Many of the participants wanted expert advice on how to minimise the number of credit cards and personal loans, the main reasons for financial stress, said Manoharan Vathisseril, co-ordinator of the seminar.

PG Rajendar, president of Sevanam, Dubai, made each of the 12,000-odd Sevanam members take a pledge that none of them would ever commit suicide or even think of taking their own life. Sevanam officials said the campaign against suicides and financial distress would continue.

Dr George Kaliadan, a psychologist in Dubai, promised to give free consultation to people suffering from suicidal tendencies once in three weeks. Advocate Hashik Thykandiyil agreed to offer free legal consultation to such financially distressed people. Social workers also urged the Indian embassy, consulate and socio-political organisations to help needy Indian citizens.