Over one lakh suicides in India every year, says report

New Delhi : Over 100,000 people commit suicides in India every year on an average. The number of suicides in the past decade has recorded an increase of 21.6 percent, said a government report.

The number of suicides increased to 134,799 in 2013 from 110,851 in 2003, said the National Crime Record Bureau report titled Crime in India, 2013, released here this week.

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The report showed that suicide rate has declined in the country after 2011.

The population has increased by 15 percent during the decade while the rate of suicides has increased by 5.7 percent in 2013 over 2003 (from 10.4 percent in 2003 to 11 percent in 2013), hence showing a mixed trend in incidents of rate of suicides during the decade, it said.

The highest incidents of 16,622 suicides were reported from Maharashtra in 2013, followed by 16,601 suicides in Tamil Nadu. Both account for 12.3 percent each of the total suicides.

Andhra Pradesh (14,607 suicides), West Bengal (13,055 suicides) and Karnataka (11,266 suicides) accounted for respectively 10.8 percent, 9.7 percent and 8.4 percent of the total suicides reported in the country, said the report.

These five states together accounted for 53.5 percent of the total suicides reported in the country. The remaining 46.5 percent suicides were reported from the rest of the 23 states and seven union territories.

Among the 53 mega cities, Chennai tops the list by witnessing 2,450 suicide cases in 2013, followed by Bangalore 2,033, Delhi 1,753 and Mumbai 1,322 cases.

These four metro cities have contributed more than 35 percent of the total suicide reported from 53 cities, it said.

The report attributed family problems and illness to be the main reasons for committing suicides. The two reasons account for 24 percent and 19.6 percent suicides out of the total suicides.

Unemployment, debt and drug abuse are the other factors that compel a person to take one’s life.

It pointed out that the number of married men (64,098) committing suicide in 2012 was double the married women (29,491).

“The incidence of married men committing suicide mainly due to family stress is on the rise,” Child Rights Initiative for Shared Parenting (CRISP) president Kumar V. Jahgirdar told IANS Thursday.

Studies conducted by the CRISP said the married men committed suicide mainly due to alleged misuse of Section 498 (A) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the Domestic Violence Act of 2005.

Section 498 (A) deals with harassing a married woman.

“We are demanding setting up of national commission for men on the lines of the National Commission of Women to look into the problems faced by the married men,” Jahgirdar added.

“When a married man faces the domestic violence in the form of verbal abuse, mental abuse and economical abuse, there is no provision in law to seek justice,” said Save Family Foundation-Delhi founder member Swarup Sarkar.

On the analogy of the Lokpal Act, which has a special clause to punish those who misuse the law, there should a law to check misuse of Section 498 (A) and the domestic violence act, he added.