Young Lives Matter



Assessing determinants of suicide among young people in India – a case-control study in Pune

Young Lives Matter is a 5-year project (April 2017- March 2022) funded by the Wellcome Trust/ DBT India Alliance to investigate the risk and protective actors for suicide among young people between

15-29 years of age in India.



Suicidal deaths in this age group account for over 50% of the suicides in India, and there is little known regarding the reasons for this which acts as a significant barrier to the development of suicide prevention programs for young people. The study will employ a case-control design in which young persons who have died by suicide (cases) will be compared with two groups matched for age and gender: living neighborhood subjects, and those who have died from accidental injuries

(control groups), on factors that are thought to be relevant to suicide, for example, mental illness, life events and personality. Information on these factors will be collected using the psychological

autopsy method, which involves interviews with relatives, friends and close associates of all subjects, as well as examination of their personal, medical, forensic and other records. Results of this study

will highlight the determinants of suicide for young people in India and inform the development of

suicide prevention programs for this population.



Madhumitha Balaji, Wellcome Trust DBT India Alliance Early Career Fellow, Sangath |

Rasika Milind Padgilwar (Research Assistant) Arjun K Shah (Research Assistant)



Vikram Patel, The Pershing Square Professor of Global Health, Harvard Medical School, and Co-founder and Managing Committee member, Sangath, Goa

Soumitra Pathare, Coordinator, Centre for mental health law and policy, Indian Law Society, Pune

Lakshmi Vijayakumar, Founder Trustee, Sneha

Michael Phillips, Director of the Suicide Research and Prevention Center, Shanghai Mental Health Center


Click here for more information about the project.