Self-employed committed more suicides than farmers
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Last Updated: Sunday, December 25, 2011, 11:29
  
New Delhi: India may be priding itself with 'animal spirit' of its entrepreneurs, but as many as 28,152 self-employed people committed suicides, 76 per cent more than farmers' suicides, in 2010, according to official figures.

The self-employed persons (SEPs) in India had the dubious distinction of committing the maximum number of suicides, followed by housewives (25,058), as per the data compiled by the National Crime Record Bureau (NCRB).

Though the NCRB has not disaggregated the segments of the people who resorted to suicides, experts feel the SEPs may include professionals as well, including lawyers, accountants and doctors.

The "animal spirit" phrase coined by renowned British economist John Maynard Keynes, is often referred to Indian entrepreneurs as well.

"They may include people from different sections of the society-- doctors, legal professionals, SMEs or from the IT sector. The reasons can be default in repaying loans, more stress and not much external support...," Professor of Psychiatry in All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) R K Chadha said.

These NCRB figures were quoted by Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar in Parliament last week. "It (suicides) is not just about the agriculturists, but of all...." he had said.

As many as 15,968 farmers took the desperate steps. Others resorting to the extreme step included unemployed (10,033). In all, 1,34,599 Indians committed suicides last year, according to NCRB.

National Small Industries Corporation CMD H P Kumar said, "SEPs include street vendors, traders, transport operators, dhaba wallahs and provider of small services."

However, he added that it cannot be concluded that the SEPs committed suicide because of financial reasons. There could be social factors as well.

PTI


First Published: Sunday, December 25, 2011, 11:29


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