Suicide video note of model Sabira and the law of abetment

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Sabira Hossain

A Bangladeshi model Sabira Hossain committed suicide after uploading a video death note on Facebook on Tuesday. Police recovered her dead body at the same day from his flat of the capital’s Dhaka Rupnagar area. After uploading facebook suicide video note on her facebook wall,   she killed herself by hanging with ceiling fan.

Before committing suicide Sabira has uploaded a 9 minute 52 seconds video note on her facebook where he said the reasons why she has taken her own life. She named responsible one Nirjhor Sinha Rawnok and his brother Prottoy for committing suicide.

Rupnagar police following the suicide note has caught Nirjhor and his brother is on run.

Sabira’s mother filed a case against Nirjhor and his brother under the Woman and child repression act.

Police found in their primary investigation that these two men incited or provoked Shabira to  to kill herself. Not only in the video suicide note, not but also Shabira in her text note on facebook said, will “Nirjhor and only Nirjhor be responsible for my death.”

Police case and judgment will not bring back Sabira to her life again. But were there any possibility to save her from committing suicide?

So far information we get from media reports, Sabira was from a broken family. Her father and mother had been living a separated life from long time. Sabira only 21 years old woman used to live alone at her Rupnagar flat. Even she could not complete her study in English medium.


Nirjhor Sinha Rawnok

She was engaged in modeling of different commodities and fashion houses. She was also a TV programme presenter of a private TV channel.

So it’s clear, the family of Sabira did not provide proper guidance or support to her to be a natured human being. Now which law will judge the parents negligence to a grown up woman! Are they abettor?

In this case abetment is a crime. And provoking someone to commit suicide is a punishable crime in Bangladeshi law. Again suicide itself is not a heroic job. Suicide is an “act of cowardice” and punishable. But there is no scope to give punishment if one kills himself, law can punish only attempt to suicide.

The suicide rate in Bangladesh is on the rise as over 10,000 people commit suicide every year for various reasons, according to statistics provided by the Police Headquarters.
The statistics show that 73,389 people committed suicide in seven years from 2002 to 2009. Of them, 31,857 hanged themselves and 41,532 had swallowed poison to take their own life.

Though it was not clear as how many youths were among the suicide deaths, their number would be higher than others, said a police official wishing not to be named.
Statistics released by Bangladesh Manabadhikar Bastabayan Sangstha, a rights group, reveal that 258 people–180 women and 78 men–killed themselves in eight months from January 2011 to August 2011.

According to statistics provided by Jatiya Mahila Ainjibi Samity, 40 girls committed suicide from 2006 to 2010 because of stalking while 4,747 women and girls killed themselves from 2001 to 2010 due to family violence, both physical and mental.

Hidan Mehjabin, a seventh grade student of Viqarunnisa Noon School, killed herself on October 9, 2011 having failed to endure the agony caused by the separation of her parents.

Sultana Akhter, 24, a resident of Kandapara village in Dharmapasha upazila of Sunamganj district, committed suicide following torture by her husband over dowry on October 13, 2011.

Dr. Mohammad Jahangirul Alam, a physician at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU), said to The Daily star the most common underlying disorder is depression and 30-70 percent of suicide victims suffer from major depression or bipolar (manic-depressive) disorder.


Sabira Hossain


It is very much clear in Bangladesh from good number cases that abettors are behind the suicide. There is law to punish the abettors.

But I want to quote the Indian High Court observation in this regard.

On May 3, 2014, Justice P Devadass of the Madras high court has said mere abuses or a casual remark or words uttered in a fit of anger could not be termed as “abetment” and people named cannot be arrested and jailed.

Suicide is an “act of cowardice” and people can’t be punished for somebody’s foolish decision,

The court then granted bail to a 20-year-old youth arrested after a 15-year-old girl killed self and named him as responsible.

Note: I did not give the facebook video link due to community rule and social responsibility.

Author: Harun Ur Rashid


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