To contain suicides, BSF plans annual mental health tests

Written by Deeptiman Tiwary | New Delhi | Updated: May 14, 2018 5:04:45 am

The steps follow year-long research, where the force studied the pattern of suicides by its personnel and analysed the reasons for the same. (Express Photo by Shuaib Masoodi/Archives)

TRYING to contain suicides among paramilitary forces, the BSF has made it mandatory for all its personnel to undergo an annual test to determine their mental health. Based on how they fare in the test, soldiers will be assigned duties and corrective measures taken. Until now only annual physical tests were held to see if soldiers were fit to discharge their duties.

The BSF has also come up with a broad set of guidelines on ensuring recreational time for soldiers, holding periodic meetings on the pattern of Alcoholics Anonymous where they can share personal stories, mandatory interviews for all those returning from leave, and an informal mechanism to address grievances.

The steps follow year-long research, where the force studied the pattern of suicides by its personnel and analysed the reasons for the same. Two hundred BSF medics were then trained in clinical psychology in consultation with psychiatrists from London to conduct the tests to determine mental health of jawans. The programme is being…

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