IITs launch war on student suicides

Its decision to hike tuition fee by 80 per cent got the most attention but the meeting of the IIT Council held last week also addressed a grave issue: all IITs agreed to put in extra effort to check suicide and suicidal tendencies among their students.

The council accepted the report of the task force constituted to prevent suicides and promote wellness in the Centrally Funded Technical Institutions such as IITs, NITs and resolved to improve counselling and hand-holding of new students. They have every reason to: the report, accessed by The Indian Express, reveals that in such institutions, 18 students attempted and 12 committed suicide in the past two years. Seven of the 12 belonged to SC, ST or OBC.

The report notes that the reasons for the suicides were quite complex, not uni-dimensional; they ranged from relationship issues, personal problems, mental stress, family problems, and in one case, multiple factors such as poor results, personal issues and inability to cope with teaching methods.

Most suicides, the report adds, were not linked to a particular period such as examinations, results, thesis submission, soon after admission or at the time of placement.

It, however, notes that a new IIT student is particularly vulnerable to suicidal thoughts: most new entrants adjust to the pressures of IIT within the first 3 to 6 months but there is a fraction of students that gets stuck in a vicious loop of missing classes, poor performance, inability to share, loneliness, stress, depression and relationship issues. A very small percentage may also have a history of illness and may resort to self-harm when they experience the first setbacks in academic or personal relationships.

The report suggests a four-level action plan to check suicides at CFTIs. One, if a student attempts suicide, he should immediately be provided medical help and his confidentiality, privacy and dignity guarded.

... contd.

Please read our terms of use before posting comments
TERMS OF USE: The views, opinions and comments posted are your, and are not endorsed by this website. You shall be solely responsible for the comment posted here. The website reserves the right to delete, reject, or otherwise remove any views, opinions and comments posted or part thereof. You shall ensure that the comment is not inflammatory, abusive, derogatory, defamatory &/or obscene, or contain pornographic matter and/or does not constitute hate mail, or violate privacy of any person (s) or breach confidentiality or otherwise is illegal, immoral or contrary to public policy. Nor should it contain anything infringing copyright &/or intellectual property rights of any person(s).
comments powered by Disqus