Lucknow girl shoots down mother, brother after inspiration from Japanese writer’s character

In a shocking incident, a 14-year-old girl from Lucknow shot down her mother and brother upon drawing inspiration from a character from Japanese author Osamu Dazai’s novel, Oba Yozo. The accused, who is a national shooting champion as well as a meritorious student, confessed during interrogation to the police and a counsellor that she was drawn by the author, who speaks about separation and alienation of an individual from the rest of the society. 

The girl revealed to a senior police officer that a character in one of Dazai’s novels titled Oba Yozo would make efforts to adapt with others, but in return fails in becoming a human. She stated that she felt a bond and identified herself with the character. A notebook was also found with notes scribbled by her – “to fail to be human, to be disqualified as a human being” – an excerpt, which has been revealed to be from Dazai’s book, Longer Human, the officer stated. 

During the interrogation, the girl narrated the order of events leading up to her mother and brother’s deaths at her hands. She told officials that they had gone to sleep after which she took a shower and then scribbled on the mirror, “I am a disqualified human”. She then stated that she shot at the bathroom mirror and stepped out to shoot her mother and brother in their sleep. 

The pistol used by the girl was registered under her father’s name, the officer said. The girl had imagined herself as one of the characters in Dazai’s novel and would react in a similar manner, the counsellor stated. During their search in the girl’s bedroom, the cops also came across a toy ‘skull’ and other deformed photos. 

The girl is said to have studied in a reputed school in the city in 2017-18, with her teachers hailing her as a bright student, who also shone in extra-curricular activities, including shooting, apart from her studies. The same academic year, the girl had triumphed in a contest conducted by the Crossword book store to create a bookmark, which has since been made the social bookmark of Crossword stores across the country. Having participated in national rifle shooting tournaments and events, the girl had been a shooter since 2013. 

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