Year 2020 has not been kind to the world. But the marginalised sections of the society remain the most affected. Women, the poor, the Middle class, Blacks, Tribals and Dalits have faced the maximum brunt of this pandemic year. Another group for whom troubles do not seem to cease this year is the Indian Film Industry. It all began with Sushant Singh Rajput’s suicide case which soon turned into a drug case. From mental health to narcotics, the case has seen multifold developments. The entertainment industry has suffered a major setback due to the coronavirus outbreak in the country. It has resulted in a halt of shooting and releases.
The Akshat Utkarsh Suicide Case
Now, the most recent Akshat Utkarsh suicide case has rocked the industry once more. On Sunday, the actor passed away at his Andheri flat in Mumbai. Akshat comes from Muzaffarpur, Bihar and aspired to become an actor in the “Dream City”. He was in the city for a couple of years now, struggling his way to achieve his dreams.
The aspiring actor allegedly died of suicide, reported ANI. The family received his body after the post mortem. A case is lodged and the police are probing the matter after Utkarsh’s body was found. Amboli Police Station’s Senior Police Inspector, Someshwar Kanthe spoke to a leading Newspaper. Kanthe said, “We have registered an Accidental Death Record (ADR) and are inquiring into the matter. Preliminary enquiry and autopsy report do not indicate any foul play. The incident took place on Sunday night somewhere between 10 pm and 11:30 PM.”
Suicide Silence and Rejection of Mental Health Issues
On September 29, Akshat’s family took his body with them to his hometown, Muzaffarpur. His family also suspects that someone murdered Akshat. In police investigation, the 26 year old’s friends said that Utkarsh was going through depression due to the covid lockdown. He had financial issues which led to debt and mental stress. However, Utkarsh’s uncle Ranjit Singh rebuffs that the late actor was suffering with depression. He rather claims that Utkarsh had recently been signed for a role in a film.
Earlier, in the Sushant Singh Rajput suicide case, initial sources claimed that Sushant had been going through depression and a hard time. However later, as media trials caught air, his family and ex-partner rebutted all claims. They said that the actor couldn’t have depression and was not one who could succumb to depression or have mental health issues.
Trouble for Entertainment Industry: Pandemic, Suicide and Mental Health
On August 5, 2020 actor Sameer Sharma passed away in his Malad situated flat late night. The 44-year-old television actor allegedly died of suicide. Actors Siddharth Malhotra, Varun Dhawan and Roadies fame Raghu Ram mourned the loss. On the night of May 15, Aadat Se Majbur fame Manmeet Grewal died of suicide at his Khargar residence. Police reported that the late actor was suffering through depression. His wife stated that he had been going through mental stress over unpaid dues. Grewal was in debt.
Other actors who died of suicide in this pandemic are Preksha Mehta, Tamil actor Thennassaru among others un-named ‘gone stars’