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‘Men outnumber women in suicides due to family crisis’

September 11, 2015 12:00 am | Updated 07:31 am IST - Kolkata:

Contrary to public perception, family problems drive more men to take their lives than women. While the number of men taking their lives due to family problems is 18,623, the number of women on this count is 9,977.

Overall family problems are the most prevalent reason for suicide accounting for 21 per cent of such cases. The findings have come up in the Accidental Deaths and Suicides in India, 2014 report of the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB).

Men’s rights activists, with whom The Hindu spoke to on the World Suicide Prevention Day, felt that the NCRB revelation held a mirror to the government’s apathy on the issue.

They said the NCRB data showed that overall, double the number of men commit suicide than women. While 89,129 men committed suicide, the number of women in this regard was 42,521.

“Men in our country get neither social nor legal support. The laws regarding domestic violence do not have any provision to safeguard the interests of men but in contrast, women get considerable legal protection,” said Amit Gupta, president of the men’s rights organisation, National Coalition for Men. He alleged that when it came to family problem, men were meted out biased treatment by society and the government.

Suicidal tendency

Even helplines that provide counselling on these issues to men, see a high suicidal tendency among them. “We get about 100 to 150 calls on our helpline every day, out of which 15 per cent are from men who are on the verge of committing suicide,” said Delhi-based counsellor Amit Lakhani. He is associated with the NGO, Save the Indian Family Foundation, which runs a helpline for men.

Mr. Lakhani said that out of about 5,000 calls they get every month, around 50 per cent came from men. “In our country, neither the people nor the government recognised men’s suffering as an issue. It has almost become a taboo subject. In such a situation many men are forced to commit suicide.”

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