Mumbai student’s suicide: All schools and colleges must have counsellors, say teachers | mumbai news | Hindustan Times
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Mumbai student’s suicide: All schools and colleges must have counsellors, say teachers

Psychiatrists who have treated scores of young people suffering from depression said that counselling centres at all educational institutions, in addition to strong support systems comprising parents and friends, were needed to curb suicides.

mumbai Updated: Apr 06, 2017 12:00 IST
Jayprakash S Naidu
Arjun Bharadwaj committed suicide on Monday.
Arjun Bharadwaj committed suicide on Monday.(HT)

Psychiatrists who have treated scores of young people suffering from depression said that counselling centres at all educational institutions, in addition to strong support systems comprising parents and friends, were needed to curb suicides.

Psychiatrist Rajendra Barve said, “Early identification and evaluation of suicidal tendencies is important. Those who are lonely and isolated are more prone to it. Also, there are several misconceptions, including the belief that those who threaten suicide never actually go through with it.” Arjun Bharadwaj, the 23-year-old students who committed suicide on Monday, had been writing about suicide on Facebook for a several days.

Psychiatrist Dr Harish Shetty, who has conducted several workshops on suicide prevention in Mumbai colleges, asked, “Why do top-notch educational institutes in Mumbai not have full-fledged counseling centers, knowing well that many students who leave their homes and come here for studies face loneliness?”

He termed suicide an epidemic that kills more people than TB, malaria and dengue, and said there was a need for a health commissioner to deal with this issue specifically. He also said that all students should be ‘mental health soldiers’ and must help identify students who undergo behavioural changes.

“Lastly, psychological vigilance is required in educational institutions. The boy was talking about suicide and hence he should have been screened by a mental health professional,” Shetty added.

Dr Y A Matcheswalla, another psychiatrist, said, “The incident was traumatic. Unfortunately, he was not able to reach out earlier and only did so at the last moment. It seems his friends didn’t realise the issues he faced.”

The Mumbai police too took to Twitter on Tuesday and encouraged young people battling depression to contact them by dialing 100, promising to listen to their problems and offer solutions.

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