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Court in Chitral Sentences Gatekeeper In Prison For Causing Suicide

A criminal court sentenced a school gatekeeper to two and a half years after in prison after finding him guilty of causing a young girl’s suicide. The victim was a college student in Harchin, Upper Chitral’s Laspur Valley and committed suicide in 2016.

The court sentenced the gatekeeper, Deedar Wali, for  two years under section 354 and six months under 506 of the Pakistan Penal Code. The girls mother registered an FIR against Wali after the victim committed suicide. However, she informed the court that the victim had approached the police two days prior to the incident and made a complaint against Wali. She further stated that no one had taken the matter seriously and that is perhaps why the disheartened victim committed suicide.

According to local rights groups, cases of suicide have recently seen an increase, particularly among teenagers. They also claim that the actual number of cases is much higher than the official figure, as many are never formally registered or documented. In a Dawn News TV report, activist Saima Munir claimed that the suicide rate in rural mountainous regions was much higher than urban areas, and described the situation in Chitral as particularly alarming.

Reasons as to why people tend to take their lives vary, and include but are not limited to depression, loneliness, family quarrels, domestic violence and interpersonal relationship issues. Suicides in teens are often attributed to pressure regarding their expected educational attainment, the weight of family expectations can often be too much to handle. These motives are commonly reported as the reasons why many take their own lives, however they aren’t always easy to identify, and according to psychiatrists there often is more than one reason behind the act.

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A suicide prevention helpline was inaugurated on 13th April 2011 at Sukh Chan. The number is 042-35761999 and operates from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM.

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