Thiruvananthapuram: The rate of suicides in Thiruvananthapuram district has been going up consistently since 1995, while it has shown a declining trend in all other districts in the State. From a suicide rate of 17.2 per one lakh population in 1995, the rate has now (2004) gone up to 36.6 per cent, a trend not witnessed anywhere else in the State.
In contrast, Wayanad, where a large number of suicides by farmers were reported, the suicide rate in 1995 was 44.4 per one lakh population, which went down to 38 in 2004.
There has been a marginal decrease in suicide rate in the State from 29.7 per one lakh population in 2003 to 28.4 in 2004 as per the latest statistics provided by the State Crime Records Bureau. The total number of suicides in the State in 2003 were 9438, which went down to 9053 in 2004. The total number of suicides in Idukki was 488; Kollam, 1085; Wayanad, 302 and Thiruvananthapuram, 1,183.
The figures were revealed at a training programme for volunteers of Kudumbasree network on suicide prevention, organised by the Department of Psychiatry, Medical College here on Saturday as part of the State-sponsored suicide prevention project, Kerala Integrated Scheme for Intervention in Suicide (KRISIS)
As many as 225 activists of the Kudumbasree network from various parts of the district participated in the programme.
They were told never to ignore or make light of a person’s threat or suggestion that he or she might commit suicide. Even a feeble attempt at suicide by a medicine overdose or consumption of household cleaning solutions should not be taken lightly because anyone who has shown an inclination for self-destruction will invariably make repeated attempts, one of which might turn out to be fatal. Depression is one of the early warning signals of suicidal tendencies. As part of the training programme, several tips on how to identify depression in individuals, was imparted.
The project KRISIS, launched in 2003, aims at developing a comprehensive programme for suicide prevention in the StateIt aims at establishing suicide prevention clinics in hospitals in a phased manner and establishing counselling services.