Kerala man who built a tomb for himself 11 years ago commits suicide
Kerala rationalist, the 72-year-old KJ Joseph Konur, hanged himself to death on Tuesday at his home in Adimaly, a hill-straddled town in the southern state’s Idukki district.india Updated: Apr 13, 2017 22:55 IST
He built his tomb 11 years ago and was waiting for the final call. But his patience ran out.
Kerala rationalist, the 72-year-old KJ Joseph Konur, hanged himself to death on Tuesday at his home in Adimaly, a hill-straddled town in the southern state’s Idukki district.
He signaled his departure from life, though not in as many words, when he asked the mason to clean his tomb last week and requested his friends and relatives to reach his house by Tuesday morning.
“The pain is unbearable, so I am going. No one is responsible for my death. Bury me according to my wish,” reads his suicide note.
Joseph, a practitioner of herbal medicine, was suffering from old age-related ailments. He is survived by his wife and three children.
He was buried in the very tomb in front of his house that he built in 2006 and made him famous. His final resting place is bereft of much ornamentation and bore a simple epithet announcing his name.
The burial ceremony was completed without any religious rites, in accordance with his wishes, which reflected the ideals he lived for and championed. Joseph questioned well-entrenched beliefs and norms.
“A man of many ideals he was against religious practices and called religion a tool to exploit and control humanity. He gave two hoots to the church when it threatened to outcast him. He lived his life on his own terms,” said friend Sathyan Konattu, a writer.
Joseph had published a book — Sathyathinte Vazhikal (Path of Truth) — two years ago, dealing in length about his principles and outlook towards life.
The book launch was held in front of his crypt, and a copy of it was placed on the tomb during his burial.
“He always told us that he wanted to leave the world without giving trouble to anyone and he kept his words,” said another friend.
He built his tomb after demolishing his herbal medicine unit.
Long-time friend Sathyan said he didn’t leave much work to his survivors.
“He even arranged a lamp near the tomb. Though he’s a rationalist he never forced his ideals on anyone, including his children.”
First Published: Apr 13, 2017 18:14 IST