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HindustanTimes Mon,24 Nov 2014

A Tsunami of suicides

Shams Ur Rehman Alavi, Hindustan Times  Bhopal, November 07, 2012
First Published: 13:17 IST(7/11/2012) | Last Updated: 13:35 IST(7/11/2012)

A wave of suicides seems to have hit the state capital. It’s no longer about major losses in business or unemployment, but even seemingly petty issues or minor mood swings are prompting people to end their lives. The most dangerous trend is that minors including teenagers and schoolchildren are committing suicides. Often, the reasons that compel them are frivolous like denial of parents to go out with friends or not being allowed to watch television. Besides, failure in relationships is also leading to a number of suicides. In the latest sensational incident, a 38-year-old married woman, Vaishali Dubey, ended her life as she had fallen in love with someone else and couldn’t get divorce instantly. Neetesh Bhave, her paramour followed suit and was found hanging in his home in Dhar.

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Barely a month ago, a schoolgirl, Butool, hanged self to death at her house near Chauki Imambada on October 10. She had returned from school and there was no apparent reason for her to take the step. During investigation police found that she was a brilliant student and had seemingly no reason to get upset. There was no incident of her getting scolded either. The case became a mystery.

But these are just few of the incidents that rocked Bhopal in recent days. This year almost 12-20 cases of suicides have been reported in Bhopal every month. The cases that have come as a real shock include suicides by youngsters and minors. And in most cases family members remain puzzled as to what had forced the person to end life. Engineering student Arvind Godson, 22, committed suicide by throwing himself on the railway track on September 27.

In the suicide note, he said that no one ought to be blamed for his death. Police also couldn’t find out what was the exact reason behind the suicide. Yet another case pertains to a 13-year-old boy ending his life. The boy had a fight with his younger brother (nine-year-old) over watching a particular television channel.

The kids’ parents had gone to the market and upon their return they found the elder son hanging from the ceiling. This incident occurred on October 8. In another incident, Harish Joshi, 29, ended life by slashing his wrists in his house near Shahpura on August 26. In this case police said that Joshi was torn between wishes of his mother who wanted him to bear a child and his wife who was against it. Youngsters often give away life too easily. Senior citizens are also committing suicide in Bhopal. From the case of former Member of Parliament Sushil Chandra Verma who had jumped off his house in Arera Colony or a 77-year-old medical practitioner who hanged himself on June 23, these cases reflect a disturbing trend.

Earlier this year, Merosan Navasivayam, 21, an engineering student at MANIT, had hanged himself to death in the college hostel, after he lost money to an online lottery scam. He hailed from Sri Lanka. “They get money, parents pamper them and are also in good colleges but still they abruptly cut short their life, which is really strange,” says a police officer posted with the Govindpura police station, as many such cases have happened under the jurisdiction of this police station.

“It is unfortunate that they don’t even realise how much family members suffer emotionally for the rest of their lives because of their decision,” he adds. “Perhaps, the older generation that struggled more was tougher and didn’t buckle easily,” says the police official.

For parents it’s increasingly becoming a challenge to deal with children, who are getting over-sensitive and more prone to depression. Often, parents live under the fear that if they scold children, the latter may take some drastic step.

In fact, this year the state capital has witnessed several shocking cases of suicides that would remain in public memory for long. In January, Anand Jain, 45, had committed suicide after killing his mother and two sisters.

Jain, who lived in Chowk, was depressed and apparently under paranoia. He left a long suicide note running into nearly 20 pages. A page was posted on the window of his house also, which alerted neighbours. When the door was forcibly opened, four bodies were found. Apart from police, psychologists are also worried by this trend. Particularly, it is about the young generation’s emotional quotient.

As per NCRB report, over 1.35 lakh people committed suicide in India in 2011. The main reasons include love affair, financial problem, family dispute, illness, mental disorder, failure in examination, dowry dispute or drug addiction.

Suicides in state

As many as 9,259 person ended their life in Madhya Pradesh last year, suggests the latest National Crime Record Bureau (NCRB) report on suicides in the country. Bhopal district recorded 236 suicides last year. Indore and Jabalpur registered 351 and 779 cases respectively. This includes 5,240 men and 4,019 women.

Women are no less prone to suicides. But what could be a revelation is the figure obtained from Police Headquarters’ data which suggests that 2,732 housewives committed suicides in the state. As many as 845 persons were in service that included both government and private sector. The remaining included 451 students and 263 unemployed persons. The rest were businessmen, selfemployed.

Many times parents are unable to understand the gravity of the situation. The family members must see if children are getting withdrawn, shunning prized possessions or spending too much time behind close doors.

Still, there shouldn’t be too much check and restriction on the child that could make him feel suffocated. Perhaps next generation parents and teachers would be more equipped and experienced at handling these issues.

It is not easy but relationships shouldn’t be superficial. Shouldn’t there be at least someone among family members, relatives, teachers, friends and neighbours who would be close enough to a teenager or child, that he should be able to confide in him without that apprehension that he wouldn’t be understood.

Elders are there to absorb shocks and ensure that the young or emotionally immature don’t get a big jolt. There is utmost need to invest in relationships. If any family member is on the verge of depression, it should be noticed.

Counselling and medication are then the next step. If there is someone in depression, there are certain precautions that are needed at home. Stock of drugs, poisonous pills or alcohol shouldn’t be kept openly or at a place from where they are easily accessible. retired persons and others.

West Bengal accounts for highest number of suicides at 16,492 followed by Tamil Nadu (15,963), Maharashtra (15,947), Andhra Pradesh (15,077) and Karnataka (12,622)

Engineering students restoring to extreme step

A rising number of engineering students are committing suicide in Bhopal. Many of them are outstation students who come to study here, living in hostels or in rented accommodations in Bhopal. Atif Khan, engineering student, committed suicide at his Ashoka Garden home on October 13. He allegedly had a row with some students of his college a few days ago and was upset over the matter.

In another incident, Ankita Jha, 21, an engineering student, hailing from Patna, ended her life at a hostel in Indrapuri on September 12. She was upset as a youth from Bihar, sent her messages that had threatening undertones. Hemant Pawar, 21, hanged himself to death in his rented house in Kalpana Nagar on September 5. He hailed from Betul.

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