Exemption for mentally ill from suicide law

Proposed amendment to mental health law


Sonal Matharu | February 18, 2011

Mentally unstable people who attempt suicide may not be booked under the law once the amended mental health act comes into being, said additional director general health services Jagdish Prasad here on Thursday.

“Under the amended mental health act, no police case will be filed against mentally unstable persons who attempt suicide,” Prasad told the media. However, he added that talk on the matter is on and whether this change will be incorporated or not can only be given next month.

In India, attempted suicide is a criminal offence under section 309 of the Indian penal code. It reads: “Whoever attempts to commit suicide and does any act towards the commission of such offence, shall be punished with simple imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year or with fine, or with both.”

The new rule will protect patients, already on medication for mental illnesses, who attempt to kill themselves.

“In many cases it is seen that mentally ill patients are harassed by the people. To save these patients from this trouble, the change in the act has been proposed,” added Prasad.

Meanwhile, doctors dealing with the mentally ill patients feel it is a positive step and will help patients seek treatment for their conditions.

“If a mentally ill patient commits suicide and is unsuccessful, he lands up in a police station whereas he should be in a hospital seeking treatment. Suicide, under the present law is a criminal offence but it is also a major public health issue,” said Dr Deepak Kumar, head, psychiatry department, Institute of human Behaviour and Allied Sciences (IBHAS).

Kumar added that mental illnesses can be treated and the new law may help break the stigma attached with these illnesses. “It may encourage mentally ill patients to seek treatment and they are bound to get better with it,” he said.



Other News

Who is Eknath Shinde, the auto driver who became CM?

Hailing from Satara district of Maharashtra, Eknath Sambhaji Shinde had to leave his education midway to financially support his family. He worked as an auto rickshaw driver, a lorry driver and also said to have worked in a brewery before he came in contact with Anand Dighe, Shiv Sena’s Thane unit pr

Metro 3 car shed to stay at Aarey, say new CM Shinde

Former Maharashtra chief minister Davendra Fadnavis stunned all at a press conference Thursday and named Eknath Shinde, the rebel MLA from Shiv Sena, as the next chief minister. Though Fadnavis said he would stay out of the government, a few hours later the BJP leadership announced he would be the deputy c

Uddhav Thackeray resigns as chief minister of Maharashtra

Minutes after the Supreme Court ordered a floor test on Wednesday night, Uddhav Thackeray in a televised address resigned as the chief minister of Maharashtra and also as a member of legislative council (MLC). He later drove down to Raj Bhavan and tendered his resignation to the governor Bhagat Singh Koshi

Gig workforce expected to expand to 2.35 crore by 2029-30

The gig economy has arrived in India, as the Covid-19 pandemic has propelled a flexibility of employment. As many as 77 lakh workers were engaged in the gig economy, constituting 2.6% of the non-agricultural workforce or 1.5% of the total workforce in India. The gig workforce is expected to expand to 2.35

How Antyodaya Saral is simplifying everyday life in Haryana

From obtaining an electricity connection to a driver`s licence, ration card, or old-age allowance, delivery of government schemes and services is an aspect of governance that impacts citizens at various points throughout their lives. The Haryana state government provides over 600 such schemes and services.

A blueprint of India’s economic future: From a former RBI governor

From Dependence to Self-Reliance: Mapping India’s Rise as a Global Superpower By Bimal Jalan Rupa Publications, 184 pages, Rs 695 Bimal Jalan, a former governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), has been one of our finest commentators on econom

Visionary Talk: Sanjay Pandey, Mumbai Police Commissioner with Kailashnath Adhikari, MD, Governance Now


Current Issue


Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter