India’s suicide crisis
Nearly 37 per cent of women who kill themselves globally come from India, according to a report that suggests arranged marriages and domestic violence are among contributing factors. The study in The Lancet said that, between 1990 and 2016, 36.6 per cent of global suicides among women and 24 per cent among men occurred in India, constituting a public health crisis. It found that married women aged 15 to 39 accounted for the highest proportion of suicides, across lines of religion, geography, social class and age. It stated: “Marriage is known to be less protective against suicide for women because of arranged and early marriage, young motherhood, low social status, domestic violence and economic dependence.” The report warned that a dangerous level of ignorance and stigmatisation, family pressures, career, cash worries and online communities were putting a whole generation of Indians at risk. “Lack of access to mental health facilities for women could be a factor,” said Rakhi Dandona, of the Public Health Foundation of India.