Ex-Miss Mauritius & Model, Viveka Babajee found dead

You might not know Viveka Babajee, the Ex-Miss Mauritius and ex-model was found hanged by her fan ceiling in her room at her apartment in Mumbai. A heartbreak might be the cause of this sudden suicide by the ex-supermodel of Mauritius. She landed in Mumbai a couple of years ago to start a career in modelling and in the Indian Film Industry.

Told sister she was going away and asked her to take care of everybody

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Viveka Babajee found dead

Viveka Babajee 37, a once-successful model in Mumbai, hanged herself in her Mumbai apartment on Friday, 26th June 2010. Reports are surfacing as to why the late Viveka had to take this drastic step. Those who knew the late Miss Mauritus were shocked upon hearing the news. There were those who met her days before and even weeks before still remember how jovial she was. Friends and police say that a recent break-up with her boyfriend caused her to hang herself from her house’s ceiling fan.

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β€œShe was a very strong girl. She made a career for herself here and bought a lovely property for her mother in Mauritius. She was not visible as a model in the last three years because she had switched to choreography and then to event management,” Rohit Jugraj,\ says.

The late model’s ex-boyfriend and partner, Kartik Jobanputra was shocked upon hearing the news. Viveka and Kartik were dating for a long time and were even partners in an event management business together. The business was a success until the two had problems which led to a split in around June 2009. Upon the break-up, Kartik says he didn’t keep in touch with her for the last six months.

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“She was never depressed when she was with me. She was supportive, understanding and always eager to find out what others are feeling. She was always concerned about the fact that her actions shouldn’t hurt anybody. I am still in a state of shock and it still feels that she is somewhere around,” says Kartik

Many say that it was the breakup from Kartik that made Viveka severely depressed.

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“She used to be very jovial and it’s really hard to believe that she was in depression. On Friday evening when I got a call that she has committed suicide, I didn’t know what to do. I rushed to her place (in Bandra). She will always be a very special person for me. I was just a phone call away. I don’t know why she didn’t call me,” says Kartik.

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About Viveka Babajee

“Honestly I feel more Indian than Mauritian. It’s really nice the way the modelling industry instantly warmed up to me,” Viveka says.

Viveka Babajee won the Miss Mauritius competition in 1993 and from then on there was no turning back for the late model. As a matter of fact, it was renowned photographer Atul Kasbekar who first spotted her on the beaches of Mauritius and asked her to be part of India’s modeling industry.

“I became Miss Mauritius in 1993. That was the starting point of my modelling career,” says Viveka

There were plans for her to be launched in Bollywood which did happen in a film called Ye Kaisi Mohabbat Hai but had an unsuccessful end. In between, she got the opportunity to be in several commercials including Live-in Jeans, Coke, Limca, Digjam and Benzer but the most provocative of all was when she did the Kamasutra condom commercial which at that time, was a first in the industry. After the Kamasutra ad, Viveka was instantly among the top models of India.

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Viveka Babajee ended her life on Friday by hanging herself. Police reported that no foul play was involved but they will find the initial reasons that led this late supermodel to take her own life. Before ending, her own life on Friday Viveka made two calls, one was to her mother in Mauritius and the other was ex-boyfriend Gautam. When the police got in touch with her mother, it was said that Viveka told her over the phone that she was going far away. She then proceeded to break everything in her house that could be broken.

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“She was going solo with her business and trying hard to do shows and get good work, but you know how difficult it is for anyone to survive in the entertainment industry. It’s cut-throat, and she wasn’t getting enough work. Her business wasn’t doing well and she was facing repeated setbacks. That too was piling on the tension for her, alongside an emotionally disturbing relationship,” a friend says.

It all happened on Friday night when neighbours at the model’s Continental Apartments, Bandra West smelled a cooking gas leak coming out of her apartment. When there was no response from the numerous knocks on her door, the neighbours then proceeded to alert the Fire Brigade. Upon the fire brigade and police’s arrival to her apartment, the door was broken down and her body was found hanging from the ceiling fan.

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Numerous items were seized from her apartment which included seized her mobile phone, laptop, diary, sleeping pills and medicines for her depression.

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“The post-mortem report has confirmed that she committed suicide by hanging herself. We are still investigating the motives which could have led her to take the extreme step,” says additional police commissioner (west) Amitabh Gupta.

After the post mortem was done at Cooper Hospital which confirmed that the ex supermodel took her own life, her body was handed over to Viveka’s sister Vineeta Parekh who happens to be a resident of Goregaon.

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‘Viveka Babjee was sweet, adorable, loved cats!’ recalls Nethra

“I first met her when she won Miss Mauritius… she was a gentle, affectionate girl,” says former beauty queen Queenie Singh

“I felt so bad about this. Viveka was a nice girl, who was good at her job. But I think being in the profession, one must learn that there are highs and there are lows. However, sometimes it becomes tough to handle that aspect of life,” (Ritu Kumar)

“Yeah! I was at that party and I want to say lots about my dearest friend… but five months from now, would any of you people be interested or even care to know about how wonderful she truly was,” (Diandra Soares)

“I am at a loss for words. She was intelligent, well-educated and came from a good family. She wasn’t overtly ambitious either. I have been discussing her death with some of her contemporaries and none of them had an inkling that she would take her life,” says Behl

“She missed her mother who is in Mauritius. When she was depressed, she’d withdraw. There were times I’d call her, and she’d return my call after two days,” remembers Mumbai fashion designer Pria Kataria Puri

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β€œThis isn’t the Viveka I remember. She was too spirited to do something like this. Maybe, that’s the way I want to remember her. She came from Mauritius to pursue her dreams. It takes courage to leave a small country and move to a big city like Mumbai. And she achieved what she did on her own,” Writer-director Rohit Jugraj.

Just heard about viveka Babajis suicide!I’m in shock! I was a baby model right after miss india.Like at 17..I remember doing so many shows with her n each time I saw her..she took my breath away. I guess noone will understand the pain that drove her to take such a drastic step..I certainly don’t!! RIP Viveka!! (Priyanka Chopra)

“Pray for my friend’s soul Viveka Babajee, who has left us forever, godbless!!! im devastated,” (Mugdha Godse)

“I haven’t slept since two days. I keep thinking about Viveka and why she did this. Women are emotional. They are not as career-driven and money-minded as men are and I don’t think Viveka could have done this owing to career problems or financial crisis,” (Anupama Varma)

I knew Viveka Babajee for many years and as everyone else who has spoken about her, I too recollect her as being one the most polite, and polished models on the circuit. Never frivolous or air headed, Viveka always came across as confident and poised.(Lara Dutta)

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