The 154-metre high Signature Bridge in the city may be attracting a huge footfall of visitors, but its flip side includes the large number of suicides committed at the spot, with the Delhi Police now waking up to the challenge and saving lives.
The city police, along with a team of private divers, has saved the lives of 30 people who tried to end their lives by jumping into the Yamuna river from the bridge, in the last one-and-a-half years.
The security personnel also counsel the victims and convince them not to take the extreme step.
According to police, 15 people committed suicide at the spot in the last one-and-a-half years. They also said that mostly women attempt to end their lives by jumping from the bridge due to matrimonial disputes.
“The Signature Bridge on the Yamuna has become an iconic place which attracts visitors from Delhi-NCR due to its location and unique design. In the flip side, owing to the bridge’s height and the Yamuna flowing underneath it, a number of people have committed suicide at the venue,” a police officer said.
“Many lives have been saved with the help of private divers and the Timarpur police staff which has been deployed on the Signature Bridge round-the-clock,” he said.
Similarly, another bridge nearby the Yamuna, known as Old Wazirabad Bridge where people usually come for taking holy dips at ‘Soorghat’, has also reported many suicide incidents.
Tribhuvan Negi, SHO, Timarpur under whose jurisdiction the Signature Bridge falls, said since the maintenance of the bridge is taken care by the Delhi Tourism Department, several letters were written to them to erect mesh walls on its both sides to prevent any suicidal jumping. However, when nothing was done by the other end, a mechasim was prepared, he said.
The officer said the beat staff of the area, picket staff and private divers who remain present along the Yamuna were sensitized to work in coordination for the prevention of suicides by rescuing such people.
Head constable Manoj, Ravinder along with Assistant Sub Inspector Raj Kumar are among the staff who have been actively indulged with the team of four private divers -- Imran, Ganesh, Ajay Kumar and Veeru. The team of divers is headed by 55-year-old Abdul Sattar, a resident of Jagatpur.
Elaborating further, the officer said the police staff present at the bridge keeps an eye on those who visit the bridge. If someone jumps into the river, an alert message is sent to the other staff and the divers team. After rescuing the victim, he is counseled and his family members are called to take him away.
Sattar, who has been actively working with the police in this direction, told PTI, "If a person jumps from the bridge, our team of divers rescue them and inform the police for further action. At times, the policemen also jump into the river to save the lives of people.”
Recalling one such incident, head constable Manoj said a 27-year-old woman from Burari had come to the Signature Bridge to commit suicide, and she was rescued and counselled.
On asked about the reason behind her act, she said her husband was an alcoholic and they often fought with each other. She was later counseled by the police and sent back home.
(With PTI inputs)