Islamabad, Nov 6 (IANS) Police in Pakistan have started a probe into the apparent joint suicide of two young women in one of the poorest areas of the country’s south. The bodies of Nathu Bai and Veeru Bai were found on their farm in the Thar region, where they lived, the BBC reported.
Populated predominantly by low-caste Hindus, in overwhelmingly Muslim area, it is unclear why the women took their lives. They were married to two brothers who worked as farmhands for a local landowner near the town of Islamkot. There have been a spate of suicides in the area, the report said.
The southern Thar desert area of Pakistan is resource-rich, but also one of the country’s poorest regions. Police say they don’t have a motive for why the women took their lives in the village of Kehri on Sunday. Veeru Bai had a baby son.
Nathu Bai and Veeru Bai were in their early twenties and married to two brothers, Chaman Kohli and Pehlaj Kohli. Veeru Bai’s son was a year old, a local resident who knew the family told the BBC. For the last six months the couples had been living on the farm some distance away from the village to help harvest the maize crops, the report said.
At least 59 people have killed themselves in the Thar region so far this year, including 38 women and two children, while about 198 suicides were reported in 2018, according to civil society group, Aware.Org, the BBC reported.
The reasons cited are increasing poverty, and population displacements caused by coal mining projects. The situation is made worse by the absence of any government safety net to help the vulnerable.