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Kota: Minor student dies by suicide, 26th case this year


Kota police Monday said a minor girl has died by suicide. This the second suicide case in past two weeks and eighth in last two months, India Today reported.

According to police, the victim used to live in Vigyan Nagar area of Kota district in Rajasthan. She was a native of Mahu town in Uttar Pradesh. With this, the toll of student suicide cases reached 26 this year.

Meanwhile, three hostel associations in the city have signed an MoU with the Jai Minesh Tribal University to give professional training to the wardens and staff members of hostels in mess management, psychological and behavioural counselling in wake of a record number of suicides this year by students preparing for engineering and medical entrance exams, reported PTI.

The Jai Minesh Tribal University will design special Hostel Management certificate courses for the wardens and staff, the report said.

Kota Hostel Association president Naveen Mittal said there are 3,500 hostels in the coaching hub and over 2.5 lakh students move to Kota annually to prepare for competitive exams such as the Joint Entrance Exam (JEE) for engineering and the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) for admission to medical colleges.

This year has seen the highest number of student suicides – 26 so far. Last year, the number was 15.

With the record spike in suicide cases, the administration has also taken several steps including mandating installation of an anti-hanging device in fans and ordering coaching institutes to not take any exam for two months.

The anti-hanging device installation was encouraged by the Kota Hostel Association since 2017 and finally mandated by the district administration this year.

“Anti-suicide nets” are also being installed in balconies and lobbies of hostels in Kota to prevent students from taking any extreme step.

The Kota police is also roping in wardens, mess workers and tiffin service providers to look for any signs of depression or stress among the students staying in hostels and PG accommodations.

While the wardens are being encouraged to participate actively in the “darwaze pe dastak” (knock on door) campaign, the Kota police has urged the mess workers and tiffin providers to report if a student is absent from the mess repeatedly and skips meals or anyone’s tiffin is found unconsumed, the report said.

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Updated: 18 Sep 2023, 09:09 PM IST

Joanna Swanson

Joanna Swanson is Europe correspondent at the Thomson Reuters Foundation based in Brussels covering politics, culture, business, climate change, society, economies and inclusive tech. With specific focus in breaking news, she has covered some of the world's most significant stories.