Life felt unbearable for Singapore Armed Forces regular Pravinraj Selvaraj. According to recent reports, the SAF member shot himself in the head on November 21. His long history of depression culminated in his suicide at just 20 years old.

Guard Duty

On November 21, Pravinraj was on the rotation for guard duty. He was serving his role along with a partner, SCT Tan Jing Rong. The two were on duty early in the day, around 7:30 a.m. Both men carried SAR 21 assault rifles, loaded with five rounds.

Guard duty continued for several hours, until around 12:30 p.m., when Pravinraj sent a photo of five rounds of ammo to five different people using WhatsApp.

At 2:30 p.m., Pravinraj walked into a restroom. He was inside for 10 minutes, so his partner finally checked on him. Pravinraj claimed he wasn’t done yet.

The Final Shot

Just a few minutes after this interaction, a gunshot exploded from within the toilet. SCT Tan threw open the door, yelling for his partner; but when he saw the blood and the injury to Pravinraj’s head, he called his superior officer.

Officers from Singapore Civil Defence and the police department showed up just a few minutes later. They discovered Pravinraj’s body in the cubicle. His weapon was in auto-firing mode, and two rounds had been fired. Tucked into his lap was a note, directing whoever found his body to check his cellphone for a suicide letter.

The Suicide Note

In the letter, Pravinraj directed that his family stay out of his affairs after his death. He felt their abandonment deeply and didn’t want them involved. Instead, he directed that his possessions be given to his best friend, and he left words of love for his girlfriend.

The suicide ruling was passed on January 19, 2017, months after Pravinraj shot himself. State Coroner Marvin Bay determined that Pravinraj’s actions were deliberate, and that he fully intended to commit suicide.

Motivations for Suicide

What would drive a young man of 20 years old, a respectable member of the SAF, to end his life? According to sources, Pravinraj had been visiting the Institute of Mental Health since he was 16. He suffered from stress related to his parents’ divorce. His mother left the family when he was 11 and did not contact him after the divorce. Pravinraj and his stepmother constantly clashed, and Pravinraj was eventually reduced to sleeping in stairways because of the volatile situation at home. Arguments with friends and a deepening state of depression and despair pushed Pravinraj to the final act of suicide.

A Better Way Out

Pravinraj isn’t the only one who has felt despair, rejection, frustration, panic, and sadness. Perhaps you or a loved one can empathise with those feelings. Your anxiety and depression may be so overwhelming that you are desperate for a way out. Instead of harming yourself, look for help at Adelphi Psych Medicine Clinic. Our office provides a warm, caring, confidential environment where you can find acceptance and treatment. With the help of an experienced Singapore psychiatrist, you can discover a way out of the darkness and be happy again.

News Feed from Adelphi Psych Medicine Clinic

Source: TNP, Jan 20, 2017