At least 15 suicides took place every hour in the country during last year, which saw over 1.31 lakh people ending their lives, with government data also noting that Maharashtra saw the highest number of such cases while Chennai heads the list among cities.
Data released by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) also said that as many as 69.7% of those who committed suicide had an annual income of less than Rs 1 lakh, while 26.9% had an annual income of between Rs 1 to Rs 5 lakh.
One out of every six persons who took the extreme step last year was a housewife.
Maharashtra saw 16,307 suicide cases in 2014 followed by Tamil Nadu at 16,122 and West Bengal at 14,310, the data said.
The percentage break-up of the three states’ share vis-a- vis the suicide tally stood at 12.4, 12.2 and 10.9, respectively.
Among the mega cities, which have a population of over 10 lakh, Chennai reported the highest number of suicides with 2,214 deaths followed by Bengaluru (1,906), Delhi (1,847),Mumbai (1,196) and Bhopal (1,064).
The rate of suicide in cities was marginally higher at 12.8% as compared to the all-India suicide rate of 10.6%, the report added.
It said that ‘family problems’ (other than that linked to marriage) contributed to 21.7% of the suicides, while illness related-issues were behind suicides in 18% of the total cases reported last year.
Data also show that one out of every six suicide cases was a housewife and the overall male-to-female ratio for suicides during the 2014 was 68:32.
The highest cases of suicide, 19.7%, was seen among the self-employed with housewives accounting for 15.3% of the total, daily wagers 12%, salaried persons 7.4%, students 6.1% and retired people 0.7%.
Talking about patterns, 41.8% committed suicide by hanging, 26% by taking poison, 6. 9% by self-immolation, 5.6% by drowning themselves and 1.1% by jumping off buildings or in front of trains.
While 20.2% were matriculate, 19% were primary school pass-outs. Also, 14.3% persons who committed suicide last year were illiterate with another 11% being intermediate pass-outs, the report added.