Data

Data | Is poor performance in exams still the major factor behind rising student suicides?

Picture for representational purposes. In 1998, suicides due to failure in exams formed about 41% of all student suicides, while in 2018, the share came down to 26%.

Picture for representational purposes. In 1998, suicides due to failure in exams formed about 41% of all student suicides, while in 2018, the share came down to 26%.

Compared to the early 2000s, the number of students who committed suicide has nearly doubled in the late 2010s in India. Back then, while the main reason for student suicides was poor performance in examinations, lately other reasons such as family issues, illness and love affairs have become major factors. Between 2014 and 2018, most student suicides occurred in Maharashtra.

Worrying rise

An increasing number of students are committing suicide in India, with their share among all such deaths steadily going up over the years. The chart plots the number of student suicides (bar, left axis) and its % share among all suicides (line, right axis). Since 2016, less than 7% of all suicides were by students.

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Exam pressure

The number of suicides due to poor performance in exams has remained stagnant over the years, with their share among student suicides* steadily going down. In 1998, suicides due to failure in exams formed about 41% of all student suicides, while in 2018, the share came down to 26%.

Also read: Comment | Preventing student suicides

The chart plots the number suicides due to failure in exams (bar, right axis) and its share among student suicides (line, left axis).

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Also read: 27 students across 10 IITs ended lives in five years: RTI

State of affairs

The map depicts the total number of student suicides recorded between 2014 and 2018 across States. The darker the colour, the higher the number of student suicides. One in every four students who committed suicide in this period belonged to either Maharashtra or Tamil Nadu.

image/svg+xmlWest Bengal3,920Tamil Nadu4,552A.P.1,740Telangana2,125Karnataka3,164