On Saturday, a 14-year-old in Mumbai texted his friend, “I am going to the building to jump”. Before anyone could react to the message, he had jumped off the fifth floor of a building. The police are investigating whether the death is India’s first linked to the “Blue Whale” suicide challenge floating on the Internet. Several suicides outside India have been linked to the deadly video game.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said today that he would report his concern to the centre. “The Blue Whale game is dangerous and has caused worries for everyone. The issue will be conveyed to the centre,” Mr Fadnavis said in the state assembly.
The boy, a class 9 student living in the Andheri suburb, had allegedly discussed the game with his friends, who had thought he was joking when he talked about suicide. He even told his friends he would not come to school anymore.
When he jumped around 5 pm, a man saw him and alerted the police.
Demanding action against the online game, former deputy CM Ajit Pawar said,” After claiming more than 100 lives across various countries, the game has reached India and Manpreet has become its first victim. The game is controlled by a master to carry out various tasks. This master further pushes the gamer to commit suicide to win the game. The police should probe who was Manpreet’s master and take action against him”.
Police had said the online game, which originated in Russia, starts by asking participants via social media to draw a blue whale on a piece of paper. The participants are then asked to carve the whale onto their body. The participants and given other tasks, like watching horror movies alone, they explained.