'Abused' Asian Women Behind Soaring Toll of Track Suicides; TRAGEDY: Navjeet Sidhu Jumped in Front of a Train at Southall, West London, Clutching Her Children in 2005
Byline: Glen Owen, Oliver Wadeson
RAIL suicides are soaring because of a dramatic rise in Asian womenkilling themselves on just one stretch of track, a train company's internalreport has revealed.
An incredible one third of the total for England and Wales now happen on theline going through Southall, West London, which has a large Asian community.
Last night a women's rights group controversially claimed that the suicideswere linked to the 'prevalence of domestic violence in Asian families'.
Figures from a route manager at First Great Western trains show that 80 of the240 rail suicides nationally last year were on the lines into Paddington, WestLondon.
These pass through Slough, Southall and other areas with large Asiancommunities and carry one tenth of the national rail traffic.
The problem has worsened since the highly publicised death in 2005 of NavjeetSidhu, 27, who jumped in front of a Heathrow Express train at Southallclutching her five-yearold daughter and 23-month-old son.All three diedinstantly.
Six months later Mrs Sidhu's mother Satwant Kaur killed herself at the samespot. There was no suggestion Mrs Sidhu was abused.But an inquest heard shefelt she had failed in her duties as a Sikh woman to be a good mother andhome-maker.
The First Great Western manager's report added that in just one week in Julythere were four suspected suicides in four days on the track between Slough andLondon track suicides His analysis said a 'disproportionately high number' ofthe total fatalities in the area were women of Asian origin. And the toll ofall suicides is so high it has even had a measurable impact on First GreatWestern's performance - with tracks usually closed for an hour after a body isfound and a knock-on effect on services that lasts all day. …