Labourer burns himself alive

Police say victim committed suicide due to abject poverty

Adeel Chaudhry February 09, 2023
Woman sets herself ablaze, man consumes anti-rodent chemicals. PHOTO: FILE


A 26-year-old labourer, crushed under the weight of economic uncertainty and financial burdens, succumbed to his injuries on Wednesday after he set himself on fire. The victim, Riyaz, lost the struggle for his life after several days in a burn unit in Multan.

Riyaz, a resident of village Chak 39 Bara L, a suburb of Chichawatni, work at a small burger shop in town for a pittance. He lived in a cramped and dilapidated house on rent in the village.

Limited sources of income and the birth of his five children increased the financial burden day by day. Daily expenses of the house were barely met, and loans taken from people could not be repaid.

Due to constant poverty and bad financial conditions, Riyaz doused himself with petrol and set himself alight, inflicting 70% burns across his body. He was shifted to Tehsil Headquarters Hospital by Rescue-1122 personnel in critical condition, later being shifted to Burns Unit Multan.

After suffering for several days in Multan, he succumbed to his injuries.

With the passage of time, the economic crisis has grown severe due to political instability in the country. As a result of financial struggles, people are increasingly turning to suicide as a way out.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 9th, 2023.


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