Wanted to write on the issue of suicide that students are committing and it has been routinely reported in the newspaper, indicate that something is wrong somewhere. How can we lose human lives, our loved ones…
I have collected few incidents from various newspapers
1. Sudhanshu Pandey didn’t look the kind of teenager who would succumb to depression. Tall and well-built with hair that was always gelled, the 17-year-old was known to his friends as a cheerful, happy-go-lucky sort of guy. A student of Class XI at DPS-Noida, he was weak in his studies and barely managed to pass in his chosen subject. But if he was bothered he didn’t show it to his friends.
On March 4, the day the Class XI results were to be announced, Sudhanshu seemed unusually reluctant to go to school. He told his mother to walk to the bus stop with his younger brother, promising her that he would follow them in a couple of minutes. But when his mother came back, she found his room locked from inside. When they broke open the door, his parents found that Sudhanshu had hanged himself to death from the ceiling fan using his mother’s sari.
They found a suicide note on his bed in which he wrote: “Bye everybody. I’m committing suicide. Nobody else is involved. I have decided to end my life because the pressure has started to get to me and I cannot take it any longer. I love my family and I hope they will understand. I love my brother Siddharth and I would like to wish him all the best for the future… I hate the Eco teacher but I’m not doing this because of her.”
Overleaf the note were scribbled random lines which, say the police, has thrown light on his last moments. “This is my first cigarette after a long time and I’m not addicted to it. I have heard that it makes death easy. “Sudhanshu would not be the only student this year to take the tragically misguided step of snuffing out his life to get away from the pressure of examinations.
2. An athlete representing her school at the state level, 15-year-old Raje Sabi, a Class X student in a Chennai school, had outrun many of her friends on the track and field events in sports. In her studies, though, she was considered just about average. With board examinations round the corner, Sabi was not allowed outdoors or to watch TV. But the pressure was too much for her to handle.
3. In Mumbai, Pradanya Rawool, an 18-year-old student appearing for her HSC examination, committed suicide on March 6 by jumping into a lake. She left a suicide note where she said she was not prepared for her exams and that nobody should be blamed for her death.
4. On March 15, a 15-year-old Mumbai boy Kshitij Chauhandied of a massive heart attack in the examination hall just 15 minutes before his first SSC examination was to begin.Abrilliant student, he did have a kidney problem but doctors say anxiety and pressure must have triggered the attack.
In the board examination time the pressure is clearly showing on the 30 million students of the 1.34 lakh higher secondary schools across the country. Students committing suicides are not uncommon. But what has everyone worried is not just the rising numbers taking the extreme step of ending their lives. Psychiatrists are reporting that a large number of students were suffering from traumatic disorders related to the fear of examinations. In the past 10 years, the pressure on students has increased by 50 per cent. This is becoming a serious problem,
Apart from perpetual fatigue, the exam phobia is preventing students from participating in extracurricular activities which is necessary for their normal physical and mental growth, the society should take up stress-management among the school going children.
I believe it is not just schools but also parents are equally responsible for the high stress levels. The hot house parenting makes the children extremely fragile to academic pressure. Parents are not accepting their children as they are.
That reforms in the examination system are urgently needed is a cry heard all across India.
The Indian school boards are inappropriate for the 21st century needs especially where the knowledge industry is the key and everyone is looking for problem solvers. Unfortunately, our examinations cater to the lowest common denonimator. Most of them come down heavily on the emphasis on memorising rather than understanding a subject. The problem is that Indian schools teach to produce outstanding students and the uniformity doesn’t accept the average students but puts them through the same obstacles as the high performers do. Coaching institutes have cracked the code and it is who coaches you, how well drilled you are and how much money you spend on these classes that gets you in. It is not taking truly meritorious students anymore.
There are many reforms in the panel which are going to be implemented but the basic intention of writing this is that to create an awareness among students that life is precious, you all are very special, no matter how you perform your exam…believe in yourself, its just an exam. it is not worthy to end your life becasue of such reasons. Keep yourself engage, and cultivate the talent within youeself, there are loads of scope waitnig for you, what is required is to identify yourself, identify your purpose in life…
use metaphors in life, like I always used to take the metaphor of “shaheen” the eagle, it doesn’t know how to rest, it believes in moving on. I would like to request you that don’t be a defeatist, life is very beautiful, if not then take up the challenge to make it beautiful,…. think before you take such drastic step…is it worthy? Think about your parents, your loved ones, if you have any issues share with friends and familiy but please don’t decide to put a fullstop to your life..