SUICIDE: An Ethical Dilemma For Chasing Death?

We are not unbeknown to the phenomenon of suicide that has been continuously cloaking our human space for a long time. Every year innumerable people take their own lives for one reason or the other. Recently, instances of suicide among children flow have inundated newspapers and magazines, whether peer pressure or mental ill-health due to family issues or other reasons.

As per the study by the World Health Organisation and the Global Burden of Diseases, around 800,000 people were estimated to have accomplished their attempts to commit suicide every year. Also, suicide is the leading cause of death among younger generations.

However, despite being such an unfortunate event, the one who attempts suicide is criminalized under the law. Is this the right approach to deal with such a vehement mental fatality? Is our government approaching the right path of development? The answer is still in obscurity.

Although more than half of countries have decriminalized attempts of suicide, several countries see suicide as an illegitimate offense against the commandments of God. Religious fundamentalism is the primary concern for most nations to criminalize suicide, e.g., in middle eastern countries such as Iraq and Saudi Arabia, the punishment for the abetment of suicide may lead to death itself.

Most Western countries, including the UK and USA, have already decriminalized the law about suicide attempts. For these countries, the perceived cause for most horrendous acts alludes to mental trauma or anguish. As society developed, the mentality of most people also followed the pace. Now, suicide attempts are considered a misdemeanor or a low-grade crime, while actual suicide is a felony that should be harshly addressed and punished.

The backbone of criticisms that view suicide as a coward and a sinister act lies in our age-old customs, principles, and so-called cultural norms. The wrath of God is the main reason for condemning suicide, as per various jurists. No comments! Everyone has their perception of God as well as their unique relationship with God. Indeed, the sole reason for this condemnation lies within the theological bent.

In a nutshell, after accomplishing all the phases of our challenges, we are stranded in the web of social norms and customs that directly or indirectly hinder our holistic development. These legislations now attack the right to pursue happiness, one of the three significant rights, apart from the right to life and liberty, mentioned by the American Independence Declaration. Here, our government can condemn such evils, but every individual is responsible for changing their perceptions. The end is still the servant of the question, “Whether it is the end or whether we would end by this?”

Waniya Javed is a first-year Law student at the Faculty of Law, AMU. She has a keen interest in legal work and news writing with a zealous approach to acquire new skills. She wants to pursue her career in Human Rights Law to contribute to society.

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