Six Suicide Cases Reported in Two Months in Tribal Areas | Thiruvananthapuram News

Thiruvananthapuram: Law enforcement authorities in the district have noted the increase in suspected suicides among victims of sexual abuse in tribal settlements in the rural district. While the new rural SP Divya V Gopinath requested a report on these deaths from her concerned subordinates, the excise department started talks to start an awareness campaign among tribal youths as it was noticed that drug addiction was also a factor in many of these deaths. .
An 18-year-old Dalit woman was reported to have died by hanging in Vithura on Tuesday after feeling cheated on by her boyfriend of four years. Police arrested her boyfriend in connection with the case. Similarly, Vithura police had arrested two youths last month for allegedly sexually abusing two underage girls from backward communities and ultimately driving them to suicide. The parents of one of the victims have now alleged that their daughter’s stalker even turned her into a drug addict.
Social activist Dhanya Raman, who works among Dalit and Tribal youths, said there had been eight cases of suicide attempts among teenagers belonging to the SC and ST communities in the past two months. Among them, six died and two survived. A 17-year-old boy is also among those who died.
“While in the case of the girls, sexual abuse was a factor that drove them to suicide, in the case of the boy, we suspect that mental issues caused by drug addiction were the cause,” said Dhanya Raman, adding that it is a matter of concern that drug traffickers from other regions are luring tribal youths into the trap of drug addiction.
Most recent deaths have been reported within the confines of Palode and Vithura police stations. The boundaries of Palode Police Station with no less than 192 tribal settlements is the most vulnerable region. It is a difficult task for law enforcement or activists to regularly cover all these settlements, she said.
Dhanya said on Friday she contacted the Excise Minister, MV Govindan Master, who agreed to launch an anti-drug campaign targeting tribal youths in these areas.
“We think the last two years that the children have been confined to their homes has had a negative effect on their state of mind,” said Dhanya Raman. In schools, regular interactions with their peers and counseling sessions with teachers help them reduce their stress. But, children have been deprived of this chance for the past two years. This could be a reason for the alarming increase in the number of suicides, she said.
Speaking to TOI SP Divya V Gopinath said most of these cases happened before she took charge of the rural district. However, she ordered the officers involved to produce details of similar cases reported in the recent past.
“The police will definitely take action to resolve the issue once I read these reports,” she said.
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