Kashmir Indepth

SMHS hospital receives 2 cases with suicidal intent daily

Majority among those who attempt suicides are below 30 years

Raouf Dar

Srinagar Sep 02 (KINS): When a freshly remarried 29-year-old, Saba Jan (name changed), opened her Facebook a few months before she was in for a shock. Her ex-husband had splashed her pictures all over the internet with obscene captions. Her first marriage had lasted just two months. She was imprisoned then beaten in those two months. Fleeing literally in the middle of night one day, she sought and got a divorce after a year. Her in-laws discovered the pictures, and out of fear, anger and shame she attempted suicide. She survived, she was lucky.  But there are many others who are not as lucky.

Twenty-year-old girl Haneefa Bano (name changed) from Pulwama was one such unlucky victim of cyber bullying. She had consumed some poisonous substance and was shifted to SMHS hospital Srinagar where she was declared brought dead.

The family members of the girl accused a youth for sharing her photograph on social media.

“She was very perturbed by the photograph which made her to commit suicide. We don’t know who had clicked that picture and how it reached that youth,” a family member told news agency KINS.

According to official data around 800 cases with suicidal intent are reported at SMHS annually and most of them are below the age of 30. Among them, the majority are females.

The figures say that suicides attempts by youth is on the rise.

A doctor at SMHS hospital said, almost two such cases are reported in the hospital on a daily basis.

“In some cases, the patients take threatening doses whereas many patients consume large amounts,” the doctor said, adding that the doses mostly contain pesticides used for apple cultivation which is readily available in rural areas.

The doctor explained, “The patients who take substantial doses need timely intervention within one or two hours after consumption as they are susceptible to cardio respiratory failure.”

“The reasons are usually failure in examinations, failed love affairs, domestic abuse, altercation with family members and black mailing,” he said.

Another doctor at SMHS Hospital defined online harassment also known as cyber-bullying as “hurting someone else using social networking or online sites.”

“This includes sending messages, posting threatening, intimidating comments, and posting humiliating pictures,” the doctor said.

He said that it can have very negative effects on the psyche of a victim. He said, “The effects can come in the form of emotional distress, anger, frustration and depression and loss of self-esteem. They can even indulge in self-harm behavior. At times they may become so withdrawn that they don’t talk to family and get isolated.” (KINS)

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