Don’t Force Your Children into the Depths of Despair for Academic Success: Tragic Suicide of 18-Year-Old Kota Student Highlighting Exam Stress

“The Only Option Left: Tragic Suicide of 18-Year-Old Student in Kota, Rajasthan: Another distressing incident of a student taking their own life has been reported in Kota, Rajasthan. This marks the second suicide in January, highlighting the growing problem of exam-related stress among students in coaching centers.

Niharika Singh, an 18-year-old resident of Kota’s Borkheda area, was preparing for the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) when she was found hanging at her home. Despite immediate response and prompt hospitalization by her family, she was pronounced dead upon arrival. An investigation, including a post-mortem examination, has been initiated by the police to understand the circumstances leading to her tragic decision.

A suicide note was discovered alongside Niharika’s body. According to the police, Niharika, who lived with her father (a bank employee) and was repeating her 12th class, was struggling with the intense pressure of competitive exams. Despite dedicating seven to eight hours to daily studies, she felt overwhelmed by the challenges.

This sad incident closely follows the suicide of Mohammed Zaid, another coaching student in Kota, originally from Uttar Pradesh’s Moradabad, who was preparing for the NEET entrance examination.

Last year’s spike in student suicides prompted the central government to issue guidelines aimed at easing the pressure on coaching students. Directives were given to coaching institutes and district administrations to protect students from depression and stress. However, the effectiveness of these measures remains a matter of debate.

Dr. Bharat Singh Shekhawat, head of the psychiatry department at Kota Medical College, highlighted last year that there needs to be a comprehensive overhaul in the approach of both coaching institutes and parents to address the alarming rise in student suicides.

“Students admitted to coaching institutes at the age of 15 or 16 are too young. They miss out on the benefits of school, such as extracurricular activities and friendships. They are also under a lot of stress due to the rigorous coaching schedule,” he added.

Despite these concerns, over 2 lakh students continue to flock to Kota annually to prepare for exams like JEE and NEET.”