The gruesome murder of 17-year-old Mukim Khan by his classmates is a manifestation of the unrest in the mind of today’s teenager.
Today’s collegian is more troubled than the one in the late 1990s and much more than those in the decades before.
There is pressure from all ends: parents, peers, the media and the moral police are all telling today’s teenager how to lead his life.
There’s the pressure to lead a branded life that is beyond the reach of most: an iPhone costs Rs 20,000 and a Blackberry Rs 35,000. Not to mention the pressure to have a steady girlfriend or boyfriend and be “cool”.
Then there is the pressure to do well in studies: even 95 per cent is not good enough.
Psychologist Dr Fabian Almeida said this makes teenagers more fragile and prone to reacting aggressively.
Dr Anjali Chhabria said a mix of greed, anger and drugs leads to crime. “Around 10 to 40 per cent of teenagers are on hash these days,” she said. She added that teens have poor coping skills and low tolerance these days. “Fifteen years ago, big families had to share a TV. Today, every child is a master of the remote control. Teens today don’t learn to take no for an answer.”