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Suicide rate among the youth highest in India

Jun 23, 2012 07:59 AM IST India India

New Delhi: According to a new Lancet study, India has the highest suicide rates in the world with maximum number of young people on the brink, worse it may soon turn out to be the biggest killer in the country.

According to Registrar General of India's first national survey, 2001-03, suicides claim twice as many lives per year as HIV-AIDS and could take over maternal mortality as the biggest killer in the country with an estimated 1,87,000 suicides in 2010.

The suicide cases among the young, wealthy and educated are the highest. 40 per cent of men and a whopping 56 per cent of women between the ages of 15 and 29 commit suicide.

Suicide rates were also found to be much higher in rural areas and nearly ten times as high in the southern states.

Author Vikram Patel said, "The most worrying trend is young women and men are committing suicide. In young women it will become the primary cause, there’s a huge social change in our country but lack of coping with that main reasons behind these suicides are depression and alcohol use."

Psychiatrist Sameer Malhotra said, "On one hand we are seeing the stress levels go up so when we talk about metropolitan cities, despite the money factor are still leading lonely lives. Two we are seeing that there some kind of disintegration of family system Patch and you miss out on those kinds of support systems."

About half of suicide deaths were due to poisoning or ingesting of pesticides. Adding to the key stressors is the lack of mental health facilities.

The Indian Health Ministry is currently revising the National Mental Health Program. Even as the World Health Organisation estimates that globally there has been a 45 per cent increase in suicide rates the last 45 years.