A 17-year-old student allegedly died by suicide in Rajasthan’s Kota on Thursday evening. This is the latest incident in the spate of student deaths which have been consistently happening since last year, when Kota once again opened up to students after the Covid-19 pandemic.
In a tragic turn of events, the student died by suicide hours after his father, who had come to visit him, left Kota for their residence in Uttar Pradesh’s Azamgarh, said officials.
“The father had come to Kota five days ago to meet his son who came here a year back. The father said he had not come to meet him all this time and that’s why he visited Kota recently. He left around 5pm yesterday after which the student went to his coaching centre and returned around 6:30pm, had dinner and retired to his hostel room. While the man was on the train, he called his son but got no response. The father then called up the hostel caretaker to check. When the caretaker went to check, he saw the student hanging from the ceiling fan of his room,” said deputy superintendent of police, Shivraj Singh on Friday.
Police said the student was preparing for JEE and was a student of Class 12.
“Preliminary investigation suggests that he didn’t have any friends in Kota. After speaking with other students in the hostel, we came to know that he didn’t talk much with those staying in the adjacent rooms. After the death, the father, who was midway to Uttar Pradesh, returned. We handed over the body over to him,” said DSP Singh.
According to the Kota police, this is the 19th suicide this year and the second in the current month.
“So far 19 suicides have taken place this year in Kota. Competitive environment and study pressure are the main reasons for the increase in suicide cases. There is no specific pattern to it. We have noticed that the students belong to different places including Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Delhi. Some of the deceased students also belong to Rajasthan,” Additional SP Thakur Chandrasheel, in-charge of the Student Cell in Kota told The Indian Express on Friday.
In June this year, two teenage students had died by suicide on the same day in two separate incidents.
According to data available with the district administration, 20 students had died by suicide in 2018 while the figure was 18 in 2019.
No student died in the city in 2020 and 2021, when the students had left Kota in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Kota district administration has been trying to deal with the issue by introducing measures such as biometric attendance in coaching centres to keep tabs on which students are missing classes and counselling but the initiatives have failed to curb the suicides.