Jul 9, 2019: Exactly a year ago on July 1st 2018 the nation woke up in disbelief to the shocking horror of Burari mass suicide wherein 11 members of the Bhatia family of Burari in New Delhi had committed suicide or that is what we are told. Whether it was a mass suicide or occult ritual that went awry, it cannot be denied that it was a freakish incident that left many questions unanswered.
Come July 1st and 2019, another incident in Gurgaon on Delhi-Haryana border just 50 kms from Burari where the entire family of 4 is wiped out in a murder-suicide incident, has once again impacted our collective consciousness.
It is a bizarre incident and the police are still clueless as regards to what prompted the family head Prakash Singh, a doctoral degree holder, to murder his wife and young children (as per the suicide note found in his pocket) before hanging himself. With this incident Gurgaon, which has earned the soubriquet as the ‘cesspool of crimes’ due to the high rates of crimes reported, has added another to its over brimming list of notorious crimes.
The bodies of Prakash Singh (55) his wife Sonu Singh (50) 21-year old daughter Aditi Prakash and 15 year-old son Aditya Prakash were found in their three bedroom home in Uppla Southend in Sector 49 in Gurgaon. The family’s four dogs were lying beside the dead bodies continuously barking till the police broke into the home with the help of the family’s domestic help. As per police information all the three except Prakash bore multiple injuries on their bodies.
Dr Singh’s body was found hanging from a ceiling fan in the drawing room. The wife’s throat was slit from the back of the neck and she died of excessive bleeding. The daughter and son also bore multiple injuries on their heads inflicted with a sharp object. Police suspect that Dr Singh must have sedated his family before committing the heinous crime as per initial autopsy reports which suggested that there were signs of struggle on their bodies.
Depression or Financial constraints
Police also said that they found a suicide note in the pockets of Dr Prakash purportedly written by him which said “I am completely failed taking my family along with me. I am responsible for this. No one else”. The police said they are examining the note with the help of handwriting experts to ascertain its authenticity. However, circumstantial evidence point out that Prakash Singh killed his family before hanging himself. Even after a week of this ghastly incident there has been no information on the incident expect some speculations ranging from depression to financial constraints as plausible reasons reported in some sections of the media.
The immediate family of Singh has not shed any light on the incident and the mobiles phones of the victims also did not reveal anything. After committing the murder and covering their bodies Dr Singh had collected the mobile phones of all and put them in a container filled with water.
speculations apart, those who knew the family in the neighborhood is still wondering what might have been the rationale behind the extreme step taken by Dr Prakash to wipe out the entire family in one go. There are reports that financial constraints might have been the reason as reported by Delhi’s leading daily Hindustan Times. However, their neighbors doubt this claim of the police and say there is no reason to believe the family faced financial adversity.
The family had its own house, cars, Sonu was running her own playschools and a day care and the daughter was a budding entrepreneur who was making name with her natural handmade beauty soaps. Singh who was working as head of R & D at Sun Pharma had a successful career though he left his job sometime back and was on the lookout for another job. It is also believed Singh who hails from Varanasi had bought three properties including one in his hometown Varanasi. On that account, the cause of financial constraints for the dastardly act, finds no takers.
Dr Prakash Singh was known as “Doctor Sahab” to most of his colleagues, acquaintances and neighbors and he had a great fascination for gardening. His wife Sonu was also a scientist and had worked for pharma companies before venturing out to start her own playschools.
She was running an NGO “Apni Pathshala” which had four schools in Gurugaon. In addition to running her playschools and day care centre Sonu was also giving a helping hand to the underprivileged children in their education.
Nothing much is known about the youngest member of the family 14 year old son Aditya though neighbours point out that the daughter 21 year old Aditi was bright and vivacious. She was a B Pharma graduate from Jamia Hamdard in New Delhi and she had founded her own company “Soap Dynamics”. Under Soap Dynamics she was manufacturing handcrafted natural soaps and skincare products. She had earned a good name and was doing well as an entrepreneur. Normal to the outside world
Singh’s family was happy and leading a normal life, financially sound, having an impeccable reputation, three members of the family except younger son, had successful careers - that is the image the neighborhood had about the family. But was there anything that the outside world including their immediate relatives and neighbors did not know or just chose to ignore? That Dr Singh has submerged the mobile phones in a container filled with water has also give rise to many doubts. He had killed his family mercilessly before he hanged himself so the only motive for doing so is to obliterate any information these mobile phones could reveal. So, the data of mobile phones might be crucial to know the truth behind the tragedy.
It is a human endeavor to evince much interest in knowing the motive behind such appalling acts of crime for self gratification. But knowing the motive of the crime is equally important to exert caution and take timely preventive measures and avoid recurrence of such incidents. The loss of promising young lives at a time when they were about to bloom, for no fault of their own, is quite disquieting to the society as a whole.
Who knows contrary to what people thought, behind the façade of a happy and normal family of Dr Prakash Singh there might have been grave issues or differences of opinion that escaped the consideration of others and but ended in wiping out the entire family and that too in a gruesome manner. Hope the mystery of the motive will be unraveled soon.