Mumbai: Family Rehearsed Suicide for 5 Days

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On the day mid-day reported that a family of four in Andheri (West) had carefully scripted and shot their suicide videos before hanging themselves on Friday night, the Oshiwara police have discovered that the deceased had been rehearsing their deaths and their last words since five days before they were found dead.

The police continues to be baffled by the case since brother-sister duo, Bharti Pal (25) and Somnath Kartik Pal (20), were found hanging in their employer’s flat in Oshiwara on February 20, and their mother (Sikha Pal) and stepfather (Manoj Ajitkumar Patel) were found similarly dead in their apartment in Lokhandwala the next morning.


Each of them left behind one-minute suicide notes on video, on a mobile phone that was bought on January 15 and was found near the mother’s body. Bharti, in her video, said that her employer, Tinku Singh, would frequently sexually assault her, and had even proposed marriage to her. She said this had driven her to the extreme step.

Her brother said the same, and added that Singh would also beat him up at times. Singh was arrested for molestation and abetment of suicide based on the suicide notes, and he then told the police that Bharti was like his sister and he did not touch her.

In a later statement, however, Singh confessed that he liked Bharti and would kiss and touch her, but had never had sex with her. But according to Bharti’s post-mortem report, although there was no indication of rape, she was sexually active.

This has led cops to wonder: is Singh lying about his relations with Bharti, or did she have a boyfriend? The police is now making efforts to unlock Bharti’s phone and to check the call records of all four family members to see whether she had a boyfriend, and also to determine whether they were pushed to commit suicide by a fifth person.

Trial runs

Yesterday, this paper reported that all four deceased seemed to be reading their suicide notes from a script and it also seemed like they had recorded each other’s clips.

After a more detailed scan of the mobile phone, the police found more videos in which the family members are seen ‘rehearsing’ their last words. All four had been practising their suicide messages at least five days in advance, the police concluded from their changing garb in each of the clips.

While Bharti and her brother were found hanging from hooks in a bedroom in their employer’s flat in Oshiwara, their mother and stepfather were found hanging from hooks in their Lokhandwala flat’s kitchen. But, the investigating team also found two extra hooks in the passageway of the Lokhandwala flat, and suspect that this was where they practised taking their lives.

Cops believe that the hooks in the passageway were placed too close together, which is why the brother-sister duo decided to commit suicide at their employer’s house instead. They are now trying to find out what exactly happened during those five days of rehearsal, as all the furniture in the Lokhandwala flat’s entire living room had been cleared out, leaving only a wooden temple and a wall clock.

A police officer from the Oshiwara police station said, “The kitchen has a fridge, which was also empty. The dustbin had been emptied and washed, and just a stack of newspapers was lying in the corner of the room.” The police officers have now asked for the CCTV recordings of the building to find out who moved the furniture of the house or who visited the couple in the five days of their planning.

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