New Delhi [India], August 3 (ANI): Minister of State for Home Affairs Nityanand Rai on Tuesday said the government has not conducted any study to assess the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on suicides in the country.

Questions were raised in Lok Sabha, whether the Government has conducted any study or proposes to conduct a study to find out the factors responsible for increase of suicide cases in rural areas after the COVID-19 pandemic in various parts of the country.

Rai said the National Crime Records Bureau compiles and publishes information on suicides in its publication Accidental Deaths and Suicides in India (ADSI) and published reports are available till the year 2019.

"The Government has not conducted any study to assess the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on suicides in the country. However, realising the impact that COVID-19 may have on the mental health of the people, the government has taken a number of initiatives to provide psychosocial support during COVID 19," Rai said in a written reply to Lok Sabha.

Rai further said these initiatives include setting up of a 24/7 helpline to provide psychosocial support, by mental health professionals, to the entire affected population, divided into different target groups like children, adults, elderly, women and healthcare workers.

The initiative also includes the issuance of guidelines or advisories on the management of mental health issues, catering to different segments of the society and advocacy through various media platforms in the form of creative and audio-visual materials on managing stress and anxiety, and promoting an environment of support and care for all. (ANI)

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