Obituary: from overdue to too soon

(Late) SSP Abrar Hussain Talking to children on Extension Rebellion even on April 15, 2019. Photo credit: Shafqat

What could have compelled young SSP to take his own life?


By Shafqat Aziz


He was by no mean an ordinary person. For knowing closely for almost 14 years, that’s the one thing I may say with absolute certainty about Abrar Hussain Nekokara, Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) who (as circumstances suggest) has committed suicide in his office on Monday (January 13, 2019). His last message at it was read says “A person commits suicide when he is fed up after realizing the futility of existence. So when a conscious person commits suicide, it may not be mourned but respected.”

Some sources claim Abrar was disturbed due to some family disputes. However, nothing could be said of the real cause that led him to this fateful decision with certainty except the meanness and mediocrity of the society in general as reality too harsh to mitigate with for the profoundness of every thinking mind and tender-hearted person.

He joined the media group I was part of as a contributor/ editor of the weekly magazine after getting graduated by Quaid-e-Azam University Islamabad. He started spending most of his time in my cabin during the intervals between his assignments. His coming to me with ‘new’ arguments in favor of ‘creationism’ and my destroying them all had now become a routine but it never faded his awesome smile or effected his polite manners. I could still remember his smiling face and expression “Shafqat Bhai (brother), I don’t agree with you on your too unorthodox views but I can’t resist talking to you either.’’ He would often advise me to be careful of uttering my views in a highly radicalized society.

A group photo taken by (Late) SSP Abrar Hussain on Extinction Rebellion event on April 15, 2019. Photo credit: Shafqat Aziz

I lost contact with him for years till found him back at Margalla Hills (hiking trail 3). In fact, he called me while rushing towards me from a steep slope. We appraised each other on the latest happenings in life and he told me that he was now serving Police department as Assistant Superintendent Police (ASP). With this reunion, I learned many new things about him such as his love for nature and zeal to protect the environment, his enthusiasm for yoga and encouraging youngsters to assume a healthy lifestyle. Reading books was though his continued old passion.

Although, I was quite aware of his being nature-lover has been, his invitation to participate in an activity under Extinction Rebellion Movement, aiming to compel governments to take right actions to save ecology and climate systems. It was a sunny afternoon of April 15, 2019. Abrar showed his happiness on my joining the event. He told me that he was motivating the team of youngsters for this event however, being a government officer, he was not able to talk to media or issue a statement.

“I am planning something bigger on climate change and love and request you if you may accept a leadership role for his future initiative,” he said enthusiastically. I told him that for a climate change campaigner myself; I would love to play my role. Off and on, we kept discussing it but a meeting was getting postponed for several reasons. On September 7, 2019, he shared a short documentary about the life, lifestyle, and landscape of his native village ‘Karam Shah’. He was part of this lovely production portraying the eco-friendly living of the village as a model to be emulated.

He was a born dreamer and Karam Shah village became the literal translation of his dreams. A remote village with utterly unhygienic living conditions and lacking all the basic amenities was now echoing with songs of joy by local singers and walls depicted with eco-friendly messages were showing the love for nature and environment by the artists, mainly Abrar’s personal friend. He introduced kitchen gardening, organic cultivation and cultural activities aiming to create a broader harmony and a source of happiness for all the village natives. “What I dream is happiness and abundance to all,” Abrar said on an occasion while sharing his vision about turning his village into a model eco-friendly living.  After some mutual comments on production, he wrote “Will coordinate for our long-overdue meeting soon,” proved to be the last of his comments.

A police officer with so many accomplishments, a nature-lover having deep concerns about the climate change impacts on the planet, a person teaching his juniors yoga, reading books as a passion and kind, humble and compassionate to all must not be an ordinary person. What compelled such a lovely and lively person to take his own life, as the evidence suggests. Besides, as compared to ordinary citizens, he was enjoying a secure career and a certain level of power and influence in society. So this ‘Why’ here becomes even more significant.

While honoring the message he left and trying my best not to mourn on his ‘conscious decision,’ I am not able to convey the same to tears flooding from my eyes. The only thing I may say with certainty is that having extraordinary intelligence is a real crime in a society ruled and controlled by intellectual mediocrity. How a thinking mind could fathom corrupt to the core trying to teach you or judge for their perceived set of moralities. In this state of mediocrity, even a tiny minority of secularists having a fascist dogma ingrained in their bone marrow.

I could recall the events when at a stage I felt like losing my mind while succumbing to societal responses. On losing your stability, you will soon find that everybody around was to laugh upon, to gossip about, to abandon you but none to understand the reasons, to dig out what’s leading you to a particular syndrome or disorder and to try to heal your wounds instead of judging and jeering at you.

What happened to Abrar could only be assumed. What was going in his mind is now unascertainable. What I certainly know is, he was a rare gem, an exceptional human being, a sensitive and kind-hearted person and above all too profound and intelligent. These traits are more than enough to take the heaviest toll in a society where merits are treated as a demerit.

His last text referred to our proposed meeting as ‘overdue’ but he left us ‘too soon’.

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