Data from the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) shows that daily wage workers, those earning less than Rs 1 lakh per annum but educated up to the secondary level have the highest share in number of suicides in India in 2018.

The poorest, but not the most uneducated, are most likely to commit suicide in India. Data from the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) shows that daily wage workers, those earning less than Rs 1 lakh per annum but educated up to the secondary level have the highest share in number of suicides in India in 2018. These figures are taken from the 2018 Accidental Deaths and Suicides in India (ADSI) report of NCRB, which works under the ministry of home affairs (MHA). The report was released on Wednesday. Suicides of persons engaged in the farming sector, which used to be the most awaited statistic in the ADSI report have come down for the third consecutive year.

66% of the 134516 suicides committed in 2018 were by those who had an annual income of Rs 1 lakh or less. A break-up by educational status and occupation shows that those educated up to secondary level and daily wage workers had the biggest shares in suicides their respective categories. To be sure, this high share of low income earners is likely to be an outcome of the higher share of this population group in the total population. Because, there is no annual data on distribution of population by consumption or income, occupation or education, it is not possible to adjust these statistics for the weight of different groups in the total population.

Share of profession-wise suicides in 2016, 2017 and 2018
Suicides of persons engaged in the farming sector have come down for the third consecutive year, the report shows. 10349 persons engaged in farming committed suicide in 2018, out of which 5763 were cultivators and 4586, agricultural labourers. 5088 out of the 5763 farmers were those who cultivated their own land while the rest leased land. Maharashtra and Karnataka alone account for more than half of total suicides in the farming sector in the country. Among major states Bihar, Odisha and West Bengal have reported zero farmer suicides, which points towards a tendency to under-report or mis-classify statistics relating to farmers’ suicides.
State-wise break-up
The 2018 report does not give a reason-wise breakup for farmers’ suicides, a section missing from the NCRB’s reports since 2016. This means that the role of economic distress cannot be ascertained in farmers’ suicides.

(Courtesy Hindustan times)