[imagesource: Netflix India]
In 2018, all of Delhi’s Burari area woke up to the grisly crime that resulted in the death of 11 people.
Shockingly, all of them belonged to one family in the area and all of them died in what seemed like a case of mass suicide.
India was gripped by horror as they tried to figure out what had happened, with many speculating that it could have been murder.
But there were no suspects or survivors, so it was hard for the authorities to find answers to the questions:
Leena Yadav, a Mumbai-based filmmaker behind critically acclaimed films including Parched and Rajma Chawal, was terribly shocked by the incident, per VICE:
“It was something that greatly disturbed me,” she told VICE. “But then it became weird, and the media spun multiple narratives out of it. But none of them had any answers.”
Yadav remembered the shock of the incident soon wearing off in India as the news cycle moved on super quick, and TV channels chased the next big scandal. “One forgets to dig deeper when these things happen. But this was an exceptional case; nothing of this sort was ever recorded by the cops.”
Now, Yadav is directing the new Netflix limited docuseries, titled House of Secrets: The Burari Deaths, which tries to answer some of the questions:
The series documents graphic details of suicide but also the lack of mental health awareness in the country and its dire consequences.
Mostly, whatever the cops had discovered only skimmed the surface.
Yadav filmed as the case unfolded:
The idea was to peel the layers to the story as the interviews took place with those connected to the case – from the Burari family’s neighbours, friends and extended family to cops, journalists and psychologists.
The production covered a total of 400 hours of interviews, and having those conversations was “emotionally draining” for the crew.
Twitter is enraptured as India is forced to revisit the shocking case:
House of Secrets: The Burari Deaths on Netflix is the most insane, haunting and spine-chilling true crime documentary that I’ve seen in a long, long time and definitely one of the best to have come out from India pic.twitter.com/4JxxHASrWi
— Drew Bernard Myrthong (@sarcastic_drew) October 9, 2021
#HouseofSecrets is harrowing and disturbing docu series on infamous burari mass suicides. It’s shocking to realize that incident which could have been avoided if there were mental health discussions in most of patriarchal families has led to loss of so many lives. 😲😨 pic.twitter.com/1BwWNRR2bA
— Heisenberg (@mukiom16) October 8, 2021
House of Secrets Burari.
A complete, agenda-free presentation of an incident, without overtly labeling it.
A testimony on the ramifications of ignored mental health, slow-brewing psychosis. And humane aspects of “Sensational headlines” from perspective of all involved.
— Nik_Invinci Shukriya Sidharth😊 #SidHeart 4 Life❣️ (@DrStrangeNik) October 10, 2021
The second episode in the series, titled Diaries, is at the heart of the story:
It charts the breakthrough in the investigation when cops found diaries in the house written over 11 years and, eerily enough, written in the third person.
The diaries had detailed instructions on how every single member of the family is supposed to go through life, where they are to invest their money, and detailed instructions for “mass salvation” including how hangings should be conducted.
Here’s the episode trailer:
House of Secrets: The Burari Deaths is on Netflix now.
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