‘Bengal records highest rate of rise in suicides’

Rate of suicides per lakh population in West Bengal was 15.5 per cent, while the national average was 10.6 per cent in 2014.

Updated - November 28, 2021 07:40 am IST

Published - July 23, 2015 12:42 am IST - Kolkata:

Among the States, which contribute to majority of incidents of suicides in the country rate of increase in suicide in West Bengal, has been the highest in the country.

With 14,310 suicides contributing 10.9 percent of total suicides in the country in 2014 West Bengal ranks third among of States in the number of suicides after Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu as per the statistics released by National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB).

Rate of suicides per lakh population in West Bengal was 15.5 per cent, while the national average was 10.6 per cent in 2014.

During the same year Maharashtra recorded 16,307 suicides (12.4 percent of total suicides in the country) and Tamil Nadu recorded 16,122 (12.2 percent of total suicides in the country).

While States like Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka have largely reduced the percentage contribution to suicides in the country, the same has increased in West Bengal.

In 2012, West Bengal did not figure in the list of top five States that contributed to the maximum suicides in the country. A year later in 2013, West Bengal contributed to 9.7 percent of suicides in the country and in 2014 the State’s contribution increased 10.9 percent.

Not only has West Bengal increased its share to suicides in country by a massive 1.2 percent, compared to the suicides recorded in 2013 the suicides in Bengal increased by 9.6 percent.

Interestingly of the 14, 310 suicides recorded in 2014 (39 suicides a day) most of them have occurred outside Kolkata.

Only 360 suicides in Kolkata Kolkata has contributed to only 360 suicides of the 14,310 in West Bengal. The State capitals in case of Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra have recorded far higher number of suicides than Kolkata. While 2214 suicides were reported in Chennai in Mumbai 1196 suicides were reported during the period.

A closer analysis of the NCRB data shows that the reasons for 3,490 instances of suicides (which accounts to nearly 25 per cent of the suicides) could not be known. The State government has not admitted agrarian distress as the reason for even a single suicide in the State and that has been reflected in NCRB data, which shows that farmer suicides in the State are nil.

A socio-economic analysis points out that majority of those who committed suicide had little or no education.

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