Muhammad Bilal Pasha came under the spotlight as a candidate who cleared CSS examination, securing 85th position in the prestigious test having come from a humble background. In an old video that emerged after the result, he was seen standing next to his father against the backdrop of a brick wall, advocating about keeping the field open for those who work hard for it. He credited his father for his hard work.
He then got interviewed by TV Channels to share his struggle of being a son of a mason, yet reaching for the stars.
I still remember the day when he passed his CSS, he were called on the morning show at "Hum News "and I was having breakfast at that time and Bilal's story was heart touching, a boy that came from lower middle class family. I don't know where Bilal was posted 1/2#BilalPasha pic.twitter.com/8MioaNifeJ— saad khan (@saadkhanpak1) November 28, 2023
On November 27, the sad news of his demise surfaced online. #BilalPasha is trending on Twitter since the news broke out. He allegedly committed suicide.
Bilal was serving as a Chief Executive Officer in the Bannu Cantonment Board. According to Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Cantt Azmat Khan, Pasha was suffering from mental stress for several days which led to the suicide.
The police said that they found Pasha’s body covered in blood inside his residence where he shot himself. They added that his body has been moved to the District Headquarters Hospital, Bannu, reports Geo.
According to a media report, the police have launched an inquiry into the incident to find out whether Pasha committed suicide or was murdered. They also said that he had a bullet wound in his head.
His funeral prayers were offered in his home district of Khanewal. His father talked to BBC, stating that the last conversation he had with his son was on Saturday in which he told him that he is getting a transfer.
The old man who worked hard to raise his son was crying at the loss. Ahmed Yar told BBC that a week ago his son was telling him about the tiresome job and that he want to either quit or get time off so that he could just sleep and unwind.
Bilal’s father talked about how he was not able to reach him after the last call and that his friend broke the news to him.
Bilal separated from his wife a few months into the marriage about two to three years ago.
He pledged to be a guiding light for those who can not afford to join big academies for CSS preparation in his initial viral video and fulfilled the promise by becoming a mentor for many.
His unfortunate death has diverted people’s attention towards the importance of mental health.
Senior CSP Hamza Shafqaat tweeted about all those who have committed suicide in past years stressing how they are not mere numbers but people dealing with mental health issues.
Following CSS officers committed suicide in last few years ..— Muhammed Hamza Shafqaat (@hamzashafqaat) November 28, 2023
2 PAS , 2 PSP , 2 Audit and 1 MLCG. These are not mere numbers; they are not just a few faces #MentalHealthMatters #CSS pic.twitter.com/J0GksR1XQg
Many of his seniors and other colleagues are expressing grief in social media messages. Zoha Malik Sher wrote, “The passing of our colleague, Bilal Pasha, is a moment of grief, not a topic for discussion.”
In this difficult time, let’s prioritize empathy. The passing of our colleague, Bilal Pasha, is a moment of grief, not a topic for discussion. May Allah grant peace to the departed soul, strength to his family, and may we collectively honour his memory with sensitivity🤲🏻— Zoha Malik Sher (@ZohaMalikSher) November 28, 2023
However, CSP Asif Nawaz, the sixth position holder of CSS-2017 had a different view.
Rest in peace, Bilal. Sorry we failed you. pic.twitter.com/oDzQ472GHb— Muhammad Asif Nawaz (@asifnz) November 28, 2023
“Politically incorrect, but amusingly ironic is the fact that many of the civil servants putting up hefty, poignant statuses/tweets about this would be really small people in their own offices, doing their best to make it a toxic environment for those working under them.”
They will copy-paste beautiful sentiments about mental health because it is apparently the correct thing to do, without ever stopping to think how their own demeanour and conduct is absolutely vitriolic for those around them. There is no introspection. https://t.co/nyvPBHqHjn— Muhammad Asif Nawaz (@asifnz) November 28, 2023
Another officer of 46th Common, Mirza Bilal Hassan tweeted, “I have never met Bilal Pasha and i can never feel the agony he went through. Civil service is rotten to its core and is frequently killing people. It is high time for the young civil servants to speak up and alter the old, rotten, corrupt, and inhumane values of civil service OR WAIT FOR THE NEXT/YOURS DEATH.”
For a person who is Fair , Just, intelligent, and Compassionate, civil service and our society are death beds. Its a Murder by Depression. Depression shoved down his throat by seniors, horrible working culture, continuous helplessness to do right, family and friends, and a mental… pic.twitter.com/mR0m9fTC5i— Mirza Bilal Hassan (@thegentlemanof1) November 28, 2023
Bilal’s father and brother have been interviewed by different media outlets where they denied any knowledge of him being depressed. The two have also narrates stories of his hard work and commitment to the job while maintaining humility.
Bilal’s father clearly told Urdu Point that there was no work-related pressure on his son.
Bilal’s eldest brother talked about his last conversation with his sibling and said that he inquired about his son’s studies with Bilal and the latter told him that he is doing fine and will become a CSP in the future.
Many of Pasha’s students are demanding an investigation into his death, expressing dissatisfaction over the declaration of his demise as a suicide. To them, he was a happy-go-lucky person, patriotic and optimistic. There are an ample number of tweets with #JusticeforBilalPasha.
#JusticeForBilalPasha— Ahmad Raza (@ahmadztweets) November 30, 2023
The authorities must thoroughly investigate the incident of his death so as to save the other civil servants and those having so much fame like Mr. Pasha from such a painful end. pic.twitter.com/VlXQKjItew
We demand an immidiate impartial judicial inquiry into this tragic inicident as we have seen biased behavior of @KP_Police1 So an independednt judicial investigation team must be comprised to probe into it and bring out the complete truth and #JusticeForBilalPasha— Saba Khan (@Saba_SKhan) December 5, 2023