Jagan, the youth who killed himself, which is touted as the result of agony he felt after the arrest of PMK leader Anbumani Ramadoss, has left his humble family in deep emotional and economic distress.
Hours after the funeral was over in his village on Monday after his body was transported from Kilpauk Medical College Hospital, his mother Indira was wailing inconsolably in front of their house which is under construction.
“After her husband deserted her and their two sons more than a decade ago, Jagan had to drop out of the school in eighth standard and start earning for the family. He helped his younger brother Vinoth in pursuing his diploma course from the salary he earned and by borrowing money from bank and private persons. He was helping to construct the house which was progressing slowly,” said Kumari, his aunt and neighbour.
Apart from losing a bread winner, mounting debt, which Jagan borrowed for his brother’s studies and resources required to complete the house pose a gloomy picture of future for Indira who has faced series of hardships all along her life. “We expect somebody to do something to mitigate the misery of the woman,” Kumari added.
When asked if they expect help from political parties or government, they are perplexed.
When asked what prompted Jagan to kill himself, Kumari said, “He was shouting against the arrest of Anbumani Ramadoss once in the evening and came with the kerosene can. But then we managed to grab the can from him.”
“However when he doused himself with kerosene at about 9.30 in the night, we could not see that as there was no light due to power cut. Only after he set himself on fire we realised it but even before we could reach him, he ran towards the road.”
His mother Indira said, “In the evening, he promised to get my mobile phone repaired so that he can speak to me when he was away. But all this happened when he went away and came back in the night.”
When asked why they have not told the police or press about the political anguish behind his attempt on life for the first couple of days after he sustained burns, Malathi, Jagan’s cousin, said, “We were desperate to save his life.” When asked if he was drunk when he set himself on fire Kumari and Malathi were not sure.