Monday October 14, 2019
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Suicide bid case false, Irom Sharmila tells court

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New Delhi:  Civil rights activist Irom Sharmila, accused of a suicide bid during her fast-unto-death protest in 2006, told a court here on Tuesday she was implicated in a false case because of worldwide media attention to her struggle.

“My struggle was attaining (attention) in national and international media and because of that police violated my fundamental right and forcibly removed me from Jantar Mantar (Delhi) and implicated me in the present false case,” Sharmila, the civil rights activist from Manipur, told Metropolitan Magistrate Akash Jain.

She said thousands of innocent people have been killed by the armed forces and hundreds of rapes occurred in Manipur. “I have been demanding the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) be repealed or be lifted from Manipur as it has caused immense hardship to common man of Manipur.”

She added that no action has been taken against such things under the garb of the AFSPA.

While recording her statement as an accused in the case, Sharmila claimed to have been implicated in a false and fabricated case, saying prosecution witnesses are “interested witnesses”.

“It is correct that I sat on fast at Jantar Mantar on October 4, 2006, but I have been fasting since 2000 and the same has not affected my health. I never refused medical check-up as same was not required,” she said.

Sharmila has been on a fast for about 15 years, seeking repeal of the AFSPA. The court on March 4, 2013, framed charges against Sharmila for attempting to commit suicide in Delhi, and put her on trial after she refused to plead guilty of the offence.

Sharmila denied having attempted suicide while fasting at Jantar Mantar in Delhi.

The court on June 6 concluded the recording of statements of prosecution witnesses in the case.

(IANS)

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WHO Calls for Developing and Implementing Strategies to Prevent Suicide and Promote Mental Health

Suicide is a public health problem, according to the WHO. An estimated 8 lakh people globally commit suicide every year

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WHO, Strategies, Suicide
In line with the regional strategy for preventing suicide, all the countries are working to develop and implement comprehensive, multisectoral suicide prevention strategies, she said. Pixabay

The World Health Organization (WHO) has called for developing and implementing strategies to prevent suicide and promote mental health.

Ahead of the World Mental Health Day, to be observed on Thursday, Poonam Khetrapal Singh, WHO Regional Director for South-East Asia, said the region’s member states are taking important steps to address the issue.

In line with the regional strategy for preventing suicide, all the countries are working to develop and implement comprehensive, multisectoral suicide prevention strategies, she said.

Suicide is a public health problem, according to the WHO. An estimated 8 lakh people globally commit suicide every year, which equates to around one person every 40 seconds. Suicide is the leading cause of death among young people aged between 15 and 29.

WHO, Strategies, Suicide
Ahead of the World Mental Health Day, to be observed on Thursday, Poonam Khetrapal Singh, WHO Regional Director for South-East Asia, said the region’s member states are taking important steps to address the issue. Pixabay

Though suicide is a global issue, nearly 79 per cent of suicides occur in low and middle-income countries. The Southeast Asia Region is the world’s most affected area, accounting for 39 per cent of global suicide mortality.

Singh said national policies or strategies for suicide prevention should be developed and implemented in line with evidence, best practices and international and regional human rights conventions. To do that, appropriate budgets should be allocated, she added.

She also said that surveillance for suicide should be established and strengthened and, wherever possible, linked to other sources of data.

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Sex and age-disaggregated data ought to be collected and measured, while the direct and indirect costs of suicide and attempted suicide should be collated, Singh said. (IANS)