Sri Lanka's suicide rate soars, while media glorifies it

Aug 27 (InfoLanka)

Sri Lanka has a record suicide rate of more than 5000 deaths a year, a report from the Centre for Policy Alternatives stated. The report says that the country has been listed as one of the few countries with such a high suicide rate.

The report said that the Presidential Task Force for the Prevention of Suicide made a series of recommendations, which included increasing the awareness among the public through media assistance and other means.

According to reports these recommendations however failed to come into active operation as the media itself at times gave the wrong connotation by publishing articles sympathetic towards suicide. This normally gave the wrong impression.

The study also charged that more than 99% of the newspaper reports on suicide were making attempt to glorify the situation while many of the reports also explained the method used in the suicide or suicide attempt.

These articles tend to influence and mislead the victims.

The media and society in general shares a concept that broken love affairs, failures of examination, loss of a limb or loved one, fear of punishment as rational and reasonable reasons for any individual to commit suicide while unemployment and poverty stands no chance as reasons, the report states.