Suicides In India: 115 Daily Wagers, 63 Housewives Died Daily In 2021, Says Govt Data

The government data says self-employed persons topped the suicide deaths with 20,231 cases and farming sector was at the bottom of the sectoral break-up of suicide deaths with 10,881 cases. Self-employed persons were followed by salaried and unemployed persons, as per the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data cited by the Union Home Ministry.


Suicide (photo for representational purposes only)

The Union government informed the Parliament on Tuesday that 115 daily wage earners and 63 women died by suicide every day in 2021. 

A total of 42,004 daily wage earners and 23,179 housewives died by suicide in 2021, said Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Nityanand Rai in response to a question in Lok Sabha. 

Citing data from the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), Rai present the following numbers for suicices in India in 2021:

  • Self-employed: 20,231
  • Salaried         : 15,870 
  • Unemployed  : 13,714
  • Students        : 13,089 
  • Business        : 12,055 
  • Private sector : 11,431 
  • Farming          : 10,881 (5,563 labourers+ 5,318 farmers)


The reply said that, of the 5,318 farmers, 4,806 were those who used to cultivate their own land with or without the assistance of agricultural labourers and 512 were those who used to cultivate on lease land or work on lease or on other's land with or without the assistance of agricultural labourers.

NCRB data on suicides

Men were the overwhelming victims of suicide, as per the NCRB Crime in India 2021 report.

Of the 1,64,033 persons who died by suicide last year, 1,18,970 were men and 45,026 were women. 

The suicide data for 2021 is in line with that of 2020 as daily wage earners, self-employed persons, and the unemployed had topped the suicide victims that year as well. Officials last year had said that pandemic-induced economic hardships were a driving factor.


"While the report did not cite Covid-19 as the reason behind the 14 per cent increase in suicide among daily wagers and 11 per cent among the unemployed, officials said the lack of livelihood and income during the lockdown could be among the factors responsible for the spurt," reported The Economic Times last year. 

India suicide rate increased: NCRB data

The suicide rate in India increased by 6.2 in 2021.

The suicide rate is the number of suicides per one-lakh population. It has been widely accepted as a standard yardstick for comparison. 

The all-India rate of suicides was 12 in 2021. The Andaman and Nicobar Islands reported the highest rate of suicide (39.7), followed by Sikkim (39.2), Puducherry (31.8), Telangana (26.9) and Kerala (26.9).

Maharashtra reported the highest number of suicides among all the states, followed by Tamil Nadu and Madhya Pradesh, as per NCRB data.

"Majority of suicides were reported in Maharashtra (22,207), followed by 18,925 suicides in Tamil Nadu, 14,965 suicides in Madhya Pradesh, 13,500 suicides in West Bengal and 13,056 suicides in Karnataka, accounting for 13.5 per cent, 11.5 per cent, 9.1 per cent, 8.2 per cent and 8 per cent of total suicides respectively," the NCRB report said.

These five states together accounted for 50.4 per cent of the suicides reported in the country. The remaining 49.6 per cent cases were reported from the 23 other states and eight Union territories.


Uttar Pradesh, the most populous state with a 16.9 per cent share of the country's population, reported a comparatively lower percentage share of suicidal deaths, accounting for only 3.6 per cent of the suicides. 

Delhi, the most-populous Union territory, reported the highest number of suicides (2,840) among UTs, followed by Puducherry (504).

A total of 25,891 suicides were reported in the 53 mega cities of the country in 2021.

(With PTI inputs)