A 24-year-old help hanged himself from a waterpipe on the terrace of his employer’s Bidhan Sarani house early on Sunday, after being scolded for returning late and drunk.
“Debu Das had been working as a help for Gobinda Prasad Dey, who has a jewellery shop, and his wife for 15 years. The childless couple treated him like their son,” said a police officer.
Over the past year, Das had taken to drinking and smoking ganja, which had caused problems in the family, added the officer. “Short-tempered and sentimental, Das used to abuse and even hit Gobinda Prasad, 72, and his wife Molina, 57, when they scolded him. He had returned very late on Saturday and was denied entry into the house by Molina.”
She later let Das in and offered him dinner. He refused and headed for her bed to sleep in. Molina asked him to sleep in his own room so that her ailing husband was not disturbed. Das had taken offence at this and headed for the terrace.
Around 7.30am on Sunday, Molina went upstairs after finding Das’s room empty and saw him hanging from the water pipe. Das, who hailed from Malancha, in South 24-Parganas, was barely 10 when his uncle left him at the Deys’ to work as a domestic help.
“He was a motherless child and we did not have the heart to turn him away, even though he was too young to help out with housework when he first came to us,” said Molina. “We used to take care of him, providing for his every need. If only I had followed him to the terrace last night…”