Increase in suicidal tendency: Govt announces ‘Sukoon’ helpline for distressed people
Srinagar: Amid the rise in suicidal tendency in Jammu and Kashmir, the government has finally come up with the measures to rescue the distressed people across the Union Territory by launching ‘SUKOON’ for the people experiencing mental health issues.
The State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) has finally resorted to assisting the people facing mental issues across Jammu and Kashmir. It has launched ‘Sukoon’, a toll-free number today to help the people in distress, officials said.
Notably, the initiative comes at a time when the suicidal tendency especially among the youth has increased across Jammu and Kashmir. The psychiatrists have also sounded alarm bells in this regard and have stated that the society, especially parents, have a pivotal role to play in this regard.
Meanwhile, DGP Home guards /Civil Defence & SDRF J&K, V K Singh said that the pandemic has been here for more than one and half year and so much trauma has generated due to loss of lives and the impact on the economy.
“The student community is also in distress. There is a provision in Disaster Management manual that there has to be psychological rehabilitation. As part of it, the initiative of coming up with a toll free number has taken in a bid to provide relief to distressed people,” he said.
He added that they will ensure that the toll-free number (1800-1807-159) will remain active for the persons who are feeling anxiety, depression, stress, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), adjustment disorder, suicidal thoughts, substance abuse, mental health emergency and pandemic related psychological pressure.
“We have collaborated with Mission Youth J&K to extend financial support to distressed youth,” he said, adding that it is an important aspect as there have been incidents where people of different age group especially students, inflicted self harm, who had fee related issues, monthly installment return of bank. Thus this type of support will provide hope to the coming generation and that is the aim of the initiative,” he said.
“We are noticing all the incidents like loss of life by way of suicides, etc. This is a step on those lines to support the community in the pandemic situation, he said.
Meanwhile, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Mission Youth, Dr. Shahid Iqbal Chowdhary said that the cases related to employment and related issues will be referred to Mission youth for redressal.
He said that the distressed youth facing mental issues, will be supported and engaged in training, skill or others.
Later Chief Secretary, Arun Kumar Mehta, inaugurated SDRF first Battalion’s 24×7 mental health helpline ‘SUKOON’ at its headquarters.
Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, P K Pole; Commandant General HG/ CD SDRF, V K Singh; Deputy Commissioner, Srinagar, Aijaz Asad, Commandant SDRF First Battalion Kashmir, Haseeb Ur Rehman besides other dignitaries were present on the occasion.
Pertinently, ‘SUKOON’ is a mental health helpline initiative (toll free number 1800-1807159) to offer guidance to persons (or their well-wishers) who are experiencing anxiety, depression, stress, panic attack, PTSD, adjustment disorder, suicidal thoughts, substance abuse, mental health emergency and pandemic induced psychological stress.
This initiative, launched by SDRF First Battalion Kashmir in collaboration with Mission Youth J&K and Tourism department, will guide the caller to avail services of clinical psycholgists, therapists, counsellors and psychiatrists and provide round the clock one to one support, free and confidential services to those experiencing mental health issues.
Chief Secretary, while appreciating the much needed service in present times, said that this initiative would go a long way in supporting vulnerable sections of the society. He urged upon youth to avail helpline Sukoon’s assistance without any hesitation and live a stress free, balanced and contended life.
He expressed dismay over drug menace which is engulfing the society towards self destruction and said that it should be our prime concern to help such victims get rid of this hazard. “Establishment of such a unique helpline by the police department is really a step forward towards this direction and will immensely help in eradicating this social evil from the society”, he maintained.