Extreme rains lead to more rural farmer suicides than droughts: Study -Jayashree Nandi

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published Published on Sep 11, 2020   modified Modified on Sep 12, 2020

-Hindustan Times

The international study includes data from Indian rural areas while measuring the impact of some weather events on suicides.

Not only drought but flooding or even extreme rainfall leading to excess water availability is linked to higher cases of suicides among those above the age of 15 years in rural areas, a new study has suggested.

In an analysis of 9,456 suicides between 2001 and 2013 in randomly selected rural areas, the researchers found that compared to normal growing seasons, the percentage of deaths due to suicide increased by 18.7% during extremely wet cropping seasons and by 3.6% during extremely dry cropping seasons.

The study led by Robin A Richardson at department of epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University with researchers from department of epidemiology, biostatistics, and occupational health, McGill University in Canada and IIT Gandhinagar used data from Million Deaths Study (MDS), which monitored the causes of death between 2001 and 2013 among approximately 8.5 million individuals living in randomly selected rural ‘small areas.’

The researchers limited rural areas selected to those with less than 5,000 population, and a density of less than 1,000 per square mile and where more than 25% of male population was engaged in agricultural work.

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Hindustan Times, 11 September, 2020, https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/extreme-rains-lead-to-more-rural-farmer-suicides-than-droughts-study/story-Pk9BZ6A5QZGtuny9q5qJMO.html

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