Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude

Suicide of an IAS Officer

Manish is an IAS officer who came from a middle-class family in Assam. After he became an IAS officer, he started getting many marriage proposals. He finally got married to the daughter of an influential businessman.
His wife came from a very rich family. His mother used to stay with him quite often, though she was not on good terms with her daughter-in-law. The two women constantly fought. After couple of years of service, Manish was finally posted as a District Magistrate in an important district of his state. However, after a few weeks, he suddenly became untraceable.
A few days later, his body was recovered near a railway track along with the suicide note in his pocket. In the suicide note, Manish stated that he had committed suicide because of the constant tussle between his mother and his wife. He also wrote that his wife is an extrovert and aggressive while he is an introvert and peace-loving person. He also recorded a video before his suicide in which he talked about how he was fed up with his life due to the constant confrontations between his mother and wife. In the video, he also says that no one is to be blamed for his suicide and that he had lost the will to live.
1. Who is responsible for the suicide of Manish?
2. If you would have been a close friend of Manish and you had the feeling that he might commit suicide, what advice would you have given him?
It is common in India for civil servants to get marriage proposals from very rich and influential families. They also often get large dowry during marriage and get married to the girls coming from rich families who are used to luxurious lifestyles.
Most Indian parents are quite attached to their children and the children, too, love and respect their parents a lot because they often make huge sacrifices to provide the best facilities to them to support their studies and career. However, after the marriage, wife also seeks the attention of her husband. This often leads to conflict within the family.
1. In this case, the wife of Manish came from a very rich family. She was used to a lavish lifestyle and brought up in a different culture. She was also quite extroverted and her temperament was quite different from Manish’s. He should have married a girl who came from a similar cultural and economic background and shared his common values. It was also wrong on the part of his wife to dominate him and his family and influence her parents. However, no one could be squarely blamed for the suicide except Manish himself, who failed to maintain a balance and chose to commit suicide.
2. If I had been the friend of Manish, I would have first advised him to marry a girl whom he loved or shared common values with, rather than someone with a high status. If I would have got the inkling of his suicide, I would have advised him to spend more time with the family and try to reconcile the differences between his wife and mother. If that did not work, I would have advised him to request his parents to go back to their ancestral home. I would have advised Manish to build a rapport with his wife and convince her to respect her parents and behave properly. If his wife would have continued to misbehave and Manish would have realised that he has no compatibility with her, I would have advised him to seek a divorce and marry a girl who shared his values and respected his parents.
Suicide of an IAS Officer
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