Daughter’s Schizophrenia Inspired Pune Man To Help Draft India’s Mental Health Act

Daughters Schizophrenia Inspired Pune Man
  • Amrit Kumar Bakhshy talked about his daughter’s schizophrenia and how it inspired him to help draft India’s Mental Health Act, 1987.
  • The National Health Service (NHS) suggests that schizophrenia can be managed by avoiding substance use and living a healthy life.

In India, where more than 1.1 billion people reside, three in a thousand people suffer from schizophrenia, estimates a 2011 study. Though it is more common in men, women tend to experience more severe symptoms.

Former President of the Schizophrenia Awareness Association, Amrit Kumar Bakhshy, shared how he has been fighting for his daughter’s schizophrenia and why he helped draft the Mental Healthcare Act, 2017. Richa, Bakhshy’s daughter, was diagnosed with schizophrenia in 2001 when she was attending a boarding school in Dehradun.

“Her symptoms appeared there first. My sister-in-law was her local guardian at that time. Her husband passed away, and Richa was the first one to witness his death. That might have been the trigger,” Bakhshy said. Richa got admission to Baroda University, where she fell into bad company and started consuming substances. It triggered her mental health, and her symptoms reappeared. After knowing, Bakhshy brought her back to Mumbai, where they used to live.

She refused to seek any medical help, and her parents used to hide her medicines in her food. Her recovery comes and goes in phases during the past 30 years, says Bakhshy. “There are very few lucky ones who permanently recover from mental illnesses. Otherwise, there’s a constant shift between remission and relapse, and it’s hard to pinpoint how the latter happened,” he added.

Bakhshy shared that their relatives, friends, and neighbors stopped having contact with them due to Richa’s erratic behavior. His wife took a year-long leave from work and eventually resigned as it was impossible to leave Richa alone at home.

In 2007, Bakhshy shifted to Pune with his family for Richa’s treatment. He enrolled her in the Schizophrenia Awareness Association (SAA). Canada-based doctor Jagannath Wani was the founder of the association. Being a friend, he offered the position of president to Bakhshy.

As the president of SAA, Bakshy was involved in the responsibility of drafting changes in the Mental health Act (1987) along with the Indian Law Society, Pune. After a lot of discussions, a new bill was introduced in Parliament where Bakhshy was also invited. “The new law puts restrictions on the use of direct ECT (electroconvulsive therapy). The treatment has been strictly prohibited on minors. The law dictates that general anesthesia and muscle relaxants need to be provided before the procedure,” he said in Parliament.

Despite the new law, Bakhshy thinks that the country needs to be more active in the implementation of suitable facilities for those mentally ill.

In 2016, Bakhshy wrote one of India’s only books for caregivers “ Mental Illness and Caregiving’. He was not aware of schizophrenia when his daughter was diagnosed with it. “Over the years, I have gained a lot of knowledge and experience. I wanted to pass on this critical knowledge to other families with similar stories,” he says.

According to the NHS, schizophrenia is not completely curable but the symptoms can be managed by avoiding substance use, living a healthy life, and spending time with loved ones.

To Know More About Different Terms In The News –

  1. Schizophrenia
  2. Treatment Of Schizophrenia
  3. Caregiving

Read More Related Articles From Our Partnered Site –

Do You Want To Know If Your Near Ones Are Suffering From Any Type Of Mental Disorder And They Need Therapy? Use Our Free Test.

Up Next

Did You Know TikTok Use Triggers Body Dissatisfaction In Women?

TikTok Use Fuels Body Dissatisfaction In Women

Mental Health News

A team of researchers at the University of Tennessee, the US, explored the link between TikTok use and body dissatisfaction. The study is published in the journal Body Image.

The Study

The researchers recruited 778 American women, aged 18–29 years, from colleges across the US. The participants completed clinical measures on TikTok use, appearance comparisons, body image issues and surveillance, exposure to body-positive media, social media literacy, etc.

The Findings

Up Next

What Are Valentine’s Day Blues And How Does It Affect Our Mental Health?

What Are Valentine's Day Blues

Despite being a jubilant celebration of love, research has linked Valentine’s Day with the “Valentine’s Day blues”.

Experts have recommended several Valentine's Day tips for mental health during the holidays.

Valentine’s Day is celebrated across the globe to honor romance and love—culturally, religiously, and commercially. Around the time of February 7th, the world struts into a week of love filled with personal and timeless traditions.

However, for some people, Valentine’s Day celebrations may bring with them holiday blues and similar negative syndromes.

Valentine’s Day And Mental Health

Up Next

Spanking Hampers Children’s Mental Health: Study Finds

Spanking Hampers Children’s Mental Health

Mental Health News

A team of researchers at Old Dominion University, the US, explored the negative impact of spanking on children’s brains. The study is published in the journal Child Abuse & Neglect.

The Study

The researchers surveyed data from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Kindergarten Class of 2010–2011 (ECLS-K: 2011) conducted in the UK. They assessed factors like incidences of spanking, children's social competence, and

Up Next

Do Women Prefer Men With Tougher Facial Features? Research Finds

Why Men With Tougher Facial Features Attract More

Psychology News

A team of researchers at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam explored how women, when faced with uncertainty, are attracted to men with tougher facial features. The study is published in the European Journal of Social Psychology.

The Study

The researchers surveyed data from Amazon Mechanical Turk. The participants were instructed to think and write about a situation in which they felt either uncertain or certain about a romantic date.

They were then presented with images of potential dates with either “tender” or “tough” facial attractiveness in a dating

Up Next

Couples Working From Home Together Share Family Tasks Equally: Study

Couples Working From Home Together

Psychology News

A team of researchers at Ohio State University explored how couples working from home together approach domestic labor. The study is published in the journal Personnel Psychology.

The Study

The researchers conducted two studies with dual-earning couples working from home in China and Korea, respectively. All participants completed two surveys for 14 consecutive workdays.

Each pair of husband and wife completed questionnaires about their work-from-home status, flexible work schedules, the amount of work and family tasks they completed, work-family conflict,

The “Madness” Of Love Is Heaven’s Greatest Blessing? How The Film ‘Gone Girl’ Depicts Antisocial Personality Disorder And Psychopathy Stonehearst Asylum: Uncovering the Dark Past of Mental Health Treatments Billy Milligan: The Man With “24” Faces The Boy Who Stayed Awake For 11 Days Straight How Netflix’s “Wednesday” Explores Adolescent Stress And Therapy What Harry Potter Teaches Us About Mental Health? Nocturnal Panic Attacks: What are they & how to recover 10 Best Healthy Foods To Beat The Holiday Blues What Are The Struggles During Holidays & 5 Ways To Prevent It Holiday Depression: 13 Tips To Beat Holiday Blues I am feeling so “behind” in life