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A shocking news of suicide by a teenage boy has been reported on Saturday. A 14-year-old boy (name hidden) committed suicide by jumping off from the fifth floor of an Andheri (East) building on Saturday, and the police are investigating it as allegedly related to the “Blue Whale Challenge”; a game that has been circulating online, reported Hindustan Times.
The Blue Whale Challenge started in 2013, with Budeikin making online contact with people, mostly teenagers and would then select the considered weak ones to be manipulated.
After selection, the administrators of the game would assign daily tasks to the players, which they must complete over 50 days. The game began with fairly basic tasks, but continually increased in magnitude to tasks such as cutting one's veins, killing an animal and finally suicide.
The creator Philipp Budeikin was thrown in jail last month. A Siberian court sentenced the 22-year-old Russian creator of the game to three years in jail for inciting Russian youths to kill themselves.
According to reports, the game has killed more than 100 children in Russia and UK. The game, believed to have originated in Russia, seems to have seeped its way into India as well. The Mumbai police are studying the online suicide game for a possible link to the death of the 14-year-old boy.
According to Hindustan Times, a witness in the opposite building stated that he had called out to the boy when he saw him walking along the edge of the terrace. He told the police that he saw the boy trying to make two attempts to jump, and then called out to him. The boy, however, did not respond.
By the time the witness rushed to get help and reached the entrance of the building, the boy had already jumped off. The police are trying to study how the game is played, and have yet to find concrete evidence in the boy’s phone relating it to the Blue Whale challenge.
According to investigations, the boy had been using the internet to search for ways to jump from the terrace. This search was done by him two days before he committed suicide. An insider informed that he, while leaving school on Friday, had told his friends that he wouldn't be coming to school on Monday.
His behaviour had changed completely from a week before. His parents had doubts about his intentions but they did not expect him to commit suicide. They are now in a state of shock.
The incident is extremely shocking and disheartening. Mumbai Police has given advisory to all parents in the city to be more vigilant with their children. Mumbai Police said; "We advise people to look after their children and keep tab on their behaviour."
Time and again excessive online exposure has taken its toll. What thought is to be given is; "What are we as parents doing to save our children from its clutches".
Cover Picture Courtesy - Hindustan Times