A month after her suicide attempt, K Anu, a NEET aspirant from Tamil Nadu's Chengalpattu succumbed to her injuries on Friday, 15 October, The News Minute reported.
With this, the state has witnessed four NEET-related deaths this year.
Anu died at Chennai's Kilpauk Medical College Hospital. She was shifted to this hospital after she was being treated for her injuries at the Chengalpattu Government Hospital.
The 17-year-old had taken the NEET exams held this year on 12 September. However, just a few days after the medical entrance test, on 16 September, she tried to die by suicide, fearing she would not clear it.
According to a report in DT Next, Anu had immolated herself, when she was alone in the house. Her neighbours later rushed to the spot and put off the fire. The girl was then admitted to Chengalpattu Hospital, where she was being treated at an intensive care unit.
Guduvanchery police told The News Minute that Anu scored 533 out of 600 in her Class XII Board exams. He added that she used to attend coaching for NEET at a Avadi centre.
According to reports, Anu, who belongs to the OBC community was a government school student. And her mother is a teacher there. Her father is also a teacher at a private school.
Soon after the NEET exams were held this year, the state saw three suicides within a week. 20-year-old Salem native Dhanush, who was to make his third NEET attempt this year, died by suicide a day before the exam on 11 September. Thereafter, on 13 September, Kanimozhi, a 17-year-old student from Tamil Nadu's Ariyalur district killed herself. Vellore native, T Soundharaya also ended her life on 15 September.
The state has since launched a helpline number - 104 - especially to help NEET aspirants having suicidal tendencies. The helpline also provides mental health support for the students. On 13 September, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin introduced a bill in the state Assembly seeking permanent exemption from NEET.
Through this, the state seeks to provide admission to undergraduate medical degree courses based on Class 12 marks. Besides, since 2017, Tamil Nadu has been doing all it can to exempt itself from NEET.
Justice AK Rajan commission, which the state had constituted to study the impact of NEET had shown that students from lower socio economic backgrounds are the ones who are adversely affected by the exam.
(With inputs from The News Minute and DT Next)
If you have suicidal thoughts, or if you know someone who needs help, please refer to this state-wise list of credible mental health professionals.)