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Geographical and Temporal Variation of Suicide in India, 2006-2015: An Investigation of Factors Associated with Suicide Risk Difference across States/Union Territories

Parthasarathy Ramamurthy, Pradeep Thilakan
Indian Journal of Psychological Medicine 2019, 41 (2): 160-166

Background: In India, about 130,000 people died by suicide in the year 2015. It is important to understand the variation of suicide across different parts of India and the trend of suicide rates over the years. The objectives of this study were to determine whether suicide rates in India showed temporal variation in the last decade and to determine whether suicide rates in India showed geographical variation across different states and union territories (UTs).

Methods: Data on suicide rates for the years 2006-2015 were collected from the official publication of the National Crime Records Bureau. This study looked for time trend in suicide rates over the years. Further, the variation in suicide rates across different states/UTs in India and the factors associated with the variation were also analyzed.

Results: The average suicide rate in India for the years 2006-2015 was 10.9/100,000 population. Overall, there was no significant variation in the suicide rate over time in the years studied. The average suicide rate varied widely across the states and UTs, between 0.91 and 43.92 per 100,000 population. The analysis revealed a positive association between suicide rates and accident rates for the above years. In addition, for the year 2011, a positive association between suicide rate and per capita state domestic product was noted.

Conclusion: There was no variation in the suicide rate in India over time. However, there were significant regional differences. Reporting differences and economic factors could partially explain the differences.


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