India- World Mental Health Day: Activists question new mental health bill to be proposed


New Delhi: A new mental health bill will soon be presented to the Cabinet for approval. But activists say the bill is only an eyewash. India has the highest suicide rates in the world, said a Lancet study. 10 per cent adult Indians have mental health disorders, according to the World Health Organisation and an estimated 1 million Indians are in need of mental health services. 25 years since the mental health act of 1987 came into being, a new Mental Health Care Bill will soon be presented to the Cabinet for approval.

The bill promises big reforms, even proposing to decriminalising attempts to suicide and ensuring to do away with inhuman practices such as chaining patients. But mental health activists are alleging that this is not enough. Disability Rights Activist Javed Abidi said, “The mental health act is draconian. The first big issue is of legal capacity in cases of treatment without consent and secondly, the bill encourages mental health institutes.”

The Union Health Ministry, though, has refuted these allegations. Union Health Ministry Joint Secretary Sujaya Krishnan said, “It’s not draconian, it’s pro-rights, pro-poor. The new bill gives rights to the patients and we are definitely not chaining people.”

World Mental Health Day: Activists question new mental health bill to be proposed

But for people like Bhargavi Davar, a mental health patient and an activist herself, the bill definitely has loopholes, at the patient’s end. “Robbing all personal rights – treatment, hospital, indefinite stay – laws make the individual more vulnerable,” Bhargavi said. With India being home to 30 to 40 million people living with psychosocial disabilities, the bill needs a wider debate before it is adopted.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Archives

Kractivism-Gonaimate Videos

Protest to Arrest

Faking Democracy- Free Irom Sharmila Now

Faking Democracy- Repression Anti- Nuke activists

JAPA- MUSICAL ACTIVISM

Kamayaninumerouno – Youtube Channel

UID-UNIQUE ?

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 6,233 other followers

Top Rated

Blog Stats

  • 1,765,999 hits

Archives

October 2012
M T W T F S S
« Sep   Nov »
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031  
%d bloggers like this: