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Suicides in UAE hit 100 a year

Dubai, July 27 (PTI): Around 100 Indians have committed suicide in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) every year since 2011, India’s ambassador has said and called on the expatriate community to help people in distress, particularly those with financial problems.

The suicides are part of around 1,300 deaths recorded in the community each year, T.P. Seetharam told a local newspaper. The Gulf, which includes the UAE, is home to the largest number of Indian migrants.

“There are roughly a 100 cases of suicide out of 1,300 deaths a year within the community of 2.5 million people. Over the last two to three years, the number has varied from 98 to 101 or 102 cases of suicide,” Seetharam told TheNational.

He, however, added that the number of those who took their lives because of spiralling debt was not available.

Seetharam urged Indians to join hands and help compatriots in distress, particularly those facing financial hardship. “We cannot relate every case to debt, although debt is a prevalent problem. It’s not as if more people have committed suicide now.”

The envoy stressed that there are no simple solutions and expressed hope that people would seek help and not take the extreme step of ending their lives.

Out of 544 deaths reported in the community in the first half of this year, 37 Indians killed themselves, the report said, blaming psychological and personal problems, besides debt.

The suicides had peaked at 176 during the 2008 recession. Officials had cited job losses and the consequent mental stress and financial woes as key factors.