Congress leader Milind Deora talks about his 'blues', suggests ways to cope

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Congress leader Milind Deora spoke about his experience with depression and suggested ways to handle mental illness as the country grappled with news of the death of Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput.

The 34-year-old actor was found dead at his Mumbai home by domestic help, who alerted the police. Rajput had dropped out from an engineering college to start a career in Bollywood and delivered several hit films over the past decade.

Deora, who became a Union minister when he was 32 years old, spoke about his battle with mental health issues on social media platform Twitter, which saw an outpouring of grief as Rajput’s colleagues from the film industry paid heartfelt tributes to the late actor.

“My own experience with suicidal thoughts, first as a teen & even as an MP, taught me to live with the blues. Sharing 5 effective coping tools…” Milind Deora had tweeted on Sunday.

Among the young politician’s suggestions for “handling the blues” was talking to people as he said, “you are more loved than you know”.

He also recommended overcoming the stigma of mental health and seeking professional help and said: “depression transcends age, gender, economic strata or success.”

“We’re in a constant struggle with our inner demons. Never give in to them,” was his third coping tool.

“Life is beautiful. Don’t get caught up in the rat race. Choose music, food, travel, reading, your work & loved ones. Do what makes you happy. Choose life,” the 43-year-old Deora added.

His last and most important advice was to “love yourself for who you are”.

Deora’s post was retweeted 2,500 times and liked by more than 13,000 users as many gave a shout out to the politician for speaking up on a public platform.

(Please reach out to your nearest mental health specialist if you need support or know someone who does. Helplines: Aasra: 022 2754 6669; Sneha India Foundation: +914424640050 and Sanjivini: 011-24311918)

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