Blog Post

When Superstition Turns Deadly

crowA 23-year-old man is believed to have committed suicide last week because a crow sat on his head twice in the same day, a bad omen according to Hindu superstition.

The International Business Times is reporting that V. H. Anand, an engineering graduate with a bright future, was found dead on July 18 in the apartment he shared with his brother, Hampanna. Anand, who was a trainee at Bangalore's Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, one of Asia's largest aerospace companies, is believed to have poisoned himself.

According to the family, Anand was very upset the day before his death because a crow sat on his head which is considered to be a bad omen. Hindus believe crows contain the souls of people who committed suicide.

"After death, such a soul will not have or find any place to settle down, so it enters the eggs of a crow," said Banu Prakash Sharma, an astrologer, to the Bangalore Mirror. Therefore, it is considered to be ominous event when one touches a crow, or if a crow enters a home.

Just before his death, Anand spoke to his mother about the incident, as well as to colleagues who said he was very upset about it.

His loved ones became concerned when he failed to respond to phone calls.

His brother eventually found him "lying on the floor with froth coming out of his mouth."

Anand was transported to the hospital immediately, but was pronounced dead on arrival.

Authorities believe Anand consumed the poison elsewhere, and then came home to die. There are no suspicious circumstances surrounding the death. Police and his family are awaiting an autopsy report to discover the exact cause of death.

I report on this story with great sorrow. Here was a brilliant and highly educated young man whose life was cut short by a baseless superstition! It seems hard to believe that folklore can have such a grip on people in our day and age, but apparently it does.

Let's all say a prayer for Anand today, that God might have mercy on his soul.