Police watch out for suicides | india | Hindustan Times
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Police watch out for suicides

In the 1990s, a market meltdown had led to several brokers and investors committing suicide across the country.

india Updated: May 22, 2006 17:44 IST

With the markets plunging again on Monday, and with investors losing hefty amounts, police are watching out for cases of suicide.

Policemen are keeping a watch near lakes, canals and other possible places where people in distress could head to kill themselves.

"A financial crisis can trigger suicides. We are just trying to prevent them. Till now, no such cases have been reported," said RK Patel, a police official in Ahmedabad.

The Bombay Stock Exchange, which had a market value of $657 billion last week after falling 10 per cent in the previous two sessions, slid as much as another 10 per cent in early trade on Monday following sales of stocks held by brokers as security on behalf of their clients.

"Gold has turned into brass. We are finished," said SS Gupta, a middle-aged Mumbai broker who claimed to have lost millions of rupees in two hours of trading on Monday morning.

Ahmedabad is considered particularly vulnerable to stock market volatility.

With over five million retail investors, the city is one of India's main trading hubs where people have put in millions of dollars of their disposable income into the stock market.

"I borrowed money to trade in the market. I lost it all in the past two days," said 37-year-old Sanjay Joshi, a small investor. "I don't know how will I repay my loans."

In the 1990s, a stock market meltdown led to several bankrupt brokers and small investors committing suicide across India, some of them drowning in rivers or throwing themselves off highrises.