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Traumatized by outrageous dowry demand that put her wedding in peril, a young Kerala doctor took her own life.
In the southern Indian state of Kerala, authorities arrested a medical student on Thursday in connection with the alleged suicide of a 26-year-old woman. Dr. Ruvaiz, a post-graduate medical student, was apprehended near Kollam following accusations from the deceased woman’s family, who claimed that Ruvaiz and his family had sought a substantial dowry.
Ruvaiz faces charges of abetment to suicide under the Dowry Prohibition Act. An investigation into the unnatural death has been initiated.
Shahana, a post-graduate student at the surgery department of Thiruvananthapuram Medical College, had reportedly been in a relationship with Ruvaiz for a year, and the couple had decided to marry. Despite an initial agreement between their families, issues arose regarding the dowry.
Shahana’s family offered five acres of land and a car, but Ruvaiz’s family deemed it insufficient, demanding a higher dowry that included a BMW car, 15 acres of land, and a substantial amount of gold. Allegedly, Ruvaiz called off the marriage when Shahana’s family couldn’t meet the escalated dowry demands due to financial constraints, leaving Shahana in a state of shock.
Shahana was discovered dead in her apartment near the hospital on Tuesday morning after failing to report for duty the previous night. A suicide note found by the police suggested that the dowry demand might have triggered her suicide.
In response to the tragic incident, the Kerala State Women’s Commission Chairperson, P. Sathidevi, expressed deep concern and promised robust action if the allegations surrounding Shahana’s death were proven true. State Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan condemned the incident, especially considering the professional background of those involved. Health Minister Veena George ordered a report on Shahana’s suicide.
The medical college principal suspended Ruvaiz, who was also removed from the presidency of the Kerala Medical Post Graduate Association (KMPGA). Dr. Nidhin, secretary of the KMPGA, voiced support for Shahana’s family and called for a fair investigation, emphasizing the association’s commitment to public sentiment.