#cyberbullying | #cyberbully | 95% of youngsters suffer cyber-bullying

A survey of some 9,500 volunteers from 24 universities and educational institutions in Assam showed that 95 per cent of them have suffered cyber-bullying and corporal punishment of some sorts leading to mental health issues.

Close to 60 per cent of the young people who were surveyed pointed out that it impacted their social relationships, while 24 per cent admitted it led to stress, anxiety and fear. Some 17 per cent also reported physical injury.

The survey was conducted by UNICEF and National Service Scheme (NSS).

As many as 9,500 NSS volunteers participated in the poll on cyber-bullying and corporal punishment and a report with the findings was released on Sunday.

The U-Report poll, launched in July this year, was developed to support the Assam State Commission for Protection of Child Rights’ (ASCPCR) campaign called `Suraksha’ (protection), aiming to raise public awareness on the forms of violence against children and redressal mechanisms.

U-Report is a social platform created by UNICEF, and is available via SMS, Facebook and Twitter, where young people express their opinion.

Currently, 19 per cent of Assam’s 3.1 crore population (Census 2011) is in the age group of 15-24 years.

Dr Mythili Hazarika, Associate Professor, Department of Clinical Psychology, Gauhati Medical College Hospital, said cyber-bullying has become common in recent years as the presence of young people in the digital space has increased considerably. This form of harassment had led to many unpleasant incidents, even leading to death by suicide in some cases.

“Social alienation, a feeling of powerlessness, anxiety, depression and loneliness are common manifestations. The victim often believes that it is his or her fault leading to psychological issues. It is important that the victim must report the matter to the immediate family and take legal redressal”, said Hazarika

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