I Can’t Do JEE : Tragic Suicide of Kota Student Sparks Concerns Over Competitive Pressure
I Can’t Do JEE : In a tragic incident in Kota, Rajasthan, another student has lost her life to the mounting pressure of competitive exams. Niharika Singh, an 18-year-old aspiring to crack the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE), was discovered hanging in her residence in Kota’s Borkheda area. Despite swift efforts by her family to get her medical help, Niharika could not be saved, marking the second suicide case in January and raising serious concerns about the mental well-being of coaching students.
Desperate Note Unveils the Struggles
In the poignant suicide note, Niharika conveyed her inability to cope with the pressure of preparing for the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE). The words “Mummy and Papa, I can’t do JEE” echoed the profound distress she was experiencing. The note continued with a heartbreaking admission of feeling like a failure, labeling herself as a loser.
The police, now investigating the incident, found a distressing suicide note alongside Niharika’s lifeless body. Living with her father, Niharika was repeating her 12th class and battling the intense pressure that comes with preparing for competitive exams. The investigation, including a post-mortem examination, aims to unravel the circumstances leading to her tragic decision. The distressing incident follows the recent suicide of Mohammed Zaid, another coaching student preparing for the NEET entrance examination.
Exam Stress Continues to Claim Lives
The surge in student suicides in Kota prompted the central government to issue guidelines last year, aimed at easing the burden on coaching students. Despite these measures, concerns persist about their effectiveness. Dr. Bharat Singh Shekhawat, head of the psychiatry department at Kota Medical College, emphasized the need for a comprehensive overhaul in the approach of coaching institutes and parents to address the alarming rise in student suicides.
Are Coaching Institutes Adding to the Pressure?
Dr. Shekhawat pointed out that students admitted to coaching institutes at a young age, around 15 or 16, miss out on the benefits of a regular school environment, such as extracurricular activities and friendships. The rigorous coaching schedules, combined with the immense pressure to excel, create a stressful atmosphere for these students. The current incident raises questions about whether coaching institutes and parents are doing enough to support the overall well-being of students navigating the competitive exam landscape.
Last year’s government directives to coaching institutes and district administrations aimed at safeguarding students from depression and stress. However, the ongoing tragedies suggest that more comprehensive measures may be necessary. The effectiveness of these initiatives remains a subject of debate, with stakeholders urging a closer examination of their impact on the mental health of students.
A Call for Holistic Approach and Mental Health Support
In conclusion, the heartbreaking loss of Niharika Singh and the broader issue of student suicides in Kota highlight the urgent need for a holistic approach to education. While competitive exams are crucial, the toll on students’ mental health cannot be ignored. The debate over the effectiveness of government measures underscores the complex nature of the problem. It is imperative for coaching institutes, parents, and policymakers to work together in creating an environment that fosters not only academic success but also the overall well-being of students. The tragic incidents serve as a poignant reminder that the mental health of students should be a priority, and support systems must be in place to address the challenges they face.