COVID lockdown saw 13.5% drop in suicide cases in Pune

Pune police lockdown curfew
Share this News:
Mubarak Ansari
Pune, August 17, 2020: A study on the trend of suicides during Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) undertaken by SNDT Arts and Commerce College for Women, Pune revealed there has been 13.5 percent decline in suicide rate between March-July in the city. The researchers have attributed the pandemic-led lockdown to be one of the reasons for this improvement.
This study was conducted to identify the reasons behind the declined number of suicide cases in Pune during the lockdown between March and July. The number of suicide cases in Pune has declined by 13.5 percent as compared to last year in the same period.
Possible factors responsible for this development
These facts are possibly associated with any or all of the following causes:
1. The probable victim did not get the opportunity to make a suicide attempt;
2. The probable victim got necessary Psychological support from family members to overcome depressive mood;
3. The fear of COVID 19 pandemic engrossed all other depression generating fears and worries;
4. The tightened policing and social patrolling made it difficult to attempt suicide.
Overall there is a decline by 13.5% in suicides (305 in 2019 vs 264 in 2020 from March to July)
a) March to July 2019 -305 suicides (226 male, 78 female, 1 – gender not mentioned)
March to July 2020 – 264 suicides (198 male, 66 female)
b) Majority of the suicides between 20-40 years age. Group (59% in 2019, 61% in 2020)
c) Majority of the victims are from the middle class (53% in 2019, 51% in 2020)
d) Domestic disputes and depression are the major reason for suicides (both combined are the cause of 45% suicides in 2019, 30% in 2020)
e) Cases in which more number of family members are there i.e. joint families, saw lesser suicides while nuclear families saw more suicides. In 2020, 72% suicides in nuclear families. (90 out of 125)
f) There is no major trend w.r.t. age, economic profile, education etc. in terms of suicides
According to the research report, the main reason for this is the support of family because of lockdown; family support can help to fight suicidal tendencies. The reasons for suicide vary from loneliness, depression, financial penury, loss of a job, the problem in relations etc., but there is no particular trend for suicides as it depends upon the temperament of a person. Prima facie, proximity to the family members gives people morale support and helps to fight suicidal tendencies. More research needs to be done on the psychological aspects of the phenomenon, the report states.
The research was conducted by professors Dr Madhavi Kulkarni, Vice Principal and Associate Professor of Commerce (Project Coordinator), Dr Manasee Rajhans, Head and Associate Professor of Psychology, Vasanti Joshi, Associate Professor of Commerce. DCP (crime branch) Bachchan Singh coordinated with the SNDT team for research. Police Inspector Ajit Lakade provided necessary statistics for research.