“There is but one truly serious philosophical problem and that is suicide.”
Suicide is not a new topic for any one of us neither I am the first person writing about it. Many people have raised their voices on this critical issue but no changes are observed as far. I do not want to list the statistical figures about suicide rate in Pakistan neither I want to debate about the reasons nor triggering factors behind such act. My main concern is towards the role that media is playing in promoting this disease in our society. May be you people would not agree with me but I have my reasons for saying this.
Whenever I switched on any news channel I usually saw news regarding suicide cases like a woman committed suicide due to poverty or a father give poison to his children and then committed suicide. Such cases are given very especial coverage on every news channel with an essence of sympathy. According to my view, these people are not give sympathy as they are the most passive people who cannot fight with the problems of their lives. I know I am quite cruel in writing such lines. But this is the fact that bravery is to fight with problems not to jump from the bridge or hang with the fan. Such acts are the most foolish acts. Suicide is not allowed in Islam. Quranic verses and Ahadis are stating again and again in against of suicide.
“Do not kill yourself. No doubt Allah is merciful and anyone who does so will be pushed in fire. And it is easy for Allah” (Nisa: 5:29,5:30)
Now let’s see the role of media in this regard. Our media is portraying the suiciders as role models for others who are facing economic or social problems. Take a recent example; media give coverage to a woman who tries to commit suicide as her transfer orders were issued from one government school to the other. I personally do not know why she risks her life on such a small issue. She has her children, her family, why doesn’t she think of them. And our media portrayed her as being the poor helpless lady. She is helpless, she needs attention by the authorities but her act is not proper neither according to Islam nor according to the laws of the state. People who committed or try to commit suicide are given special coverage and media try to blame government for such acts. Audience who watch these cases get an idea that it is an easy way to get escape from problems or in other words people also think that if we try to commit suicide we would be successful in getting attention from any minister or NGO worker through media and that will end all our problems. Both the outcomes are being projected by the media. In spite of this, media should demotivate people who try to commit suicide and do not portray them as the most helpless ones who do not have other options. There are other options also, only the need is of awareness and I think media is the best option to spread awareness as it is the basic role of media.