NHRC notice to HRD Ministry on suicides in JNVs

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), today, has taken suo motu cognizance of a media report that 49 students of the residential Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas, JNVs committed suicide at campus in five years from 2013 to 2017. Half of them were Dalit and Tribal students, and a majority of them were boys. Reportedly, all, except seven, were suicides by hanging, and the bodies were discovered either by classmates or members of the school staff. The JNVs are reported to be the central government’s pace-setting residential schools for the talented children from rural India.


The NHRC has observed that the contents of the media report, if true, cannot be ignored or overlooked as this reported pattern of suicides by so many students in JNVs might still increase, if not checked in time with appropriate measures. Expressing its serious concern over them, the Commission has issued a notice to the Secretary, Union Ministry of Human Resource Development.


NHRC has sought information that whether trained counselors are available in the campus to whom these adolescent can open up and talk about their feeling; Is there is a dedicated staff to ensure that children are not left alone in the rooms and emergency assistance through telephone counseling and suicide hotline services are available to the students.


The NHRC has further observed that the intelligent students with the rural background are entrusted to the care of JNVs. They are the strength and future of this country. The proportion of the suicides of the students form the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe communities is also a matter of concerns for a society, which aspires for an inclusive growth. It is a matter of fact, that the teenagers during this age face difficulties, as they undergo a transition into adulthood.


Teenagers may often get confused and develop a feeling of being isolated. It is also a matter of fact, that many suicides are committed by the people, who are depressed and are not able to cope up with stress. As per the medical science, the suicidal tendencies don’t just appear out of the blue, people usually display a number of warning signs. If trained counselors are available, behavioral changes, suicidal tendencies and depression among the students can be spotted in time and with the guidance and counseling of counselors, suicides can be controlled.

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