66 children have committed suicide in Kerala since the lockdown began

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Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan revealed that 66 children and teenagers under the age of 18 have died by suicide in Kerala since 25 March.

Here are five components of the story:

  • Vijayan, in a press meeting on Thursday, announced the formation of a special committee headed by Director General of Police R Sreelekha, to study the issue.
  • They also announced ‘Chiri’, another initiative by student police cadets to provide counselling and other services.
  • The Chief Minister suggested the parents to take a softer tone while talking to kids since reasons as trivial as being scolded for playing a mobile game or bunking an online class, harsh words of parents may affect them gravely during the lockdown.
  • “It is not only in adults; children, especially adolescents, are prone to mental health issues like depression and stress which can, in some cases, possibly lead to suicides,” said Dr Sandeesh, clinical psychologist, Government Mental Health Centre, Kozhikode.
  • While issues related to school and family problems are the commonly seen problems among children but there are other sets of issues that children are facing during the lockdown. Not being able to step out of the house increases the possibility of parent-children clashes specially for adolescents.
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