Note (4/8/17): The name of the Mumbai teenager has been redacted since as of August 4 cops have not definitively concluded that his death was related to the challenge.
A 14-year-old boy from Andheri, who committed suicide on Saturday by jumping off a building, could well be the first victim of the ‘Blue Whale’ suicide challenge in the city, and likely the country.
According to officials, (name redacted) jumped off the fifth floor of the building in Sher-e-Punjab area of suburban Andheri at around 5 pm on Saturday.
The Class 9 student was rushed to a local hospital immediately after he had jumped, but was declared dead on arrival. A person, who was standing near the building at the time of the incident, alerted the cops.
The police were yet to find the reason behind the extreme step and trying to ascertain if it was anyway related to the online game.
“The teenagers friends were chatting on social media groups about his death being linked to the Blue Whale online suicide challenge game. But, we are yet to examine his mobile phone and social media groups where he was active,” a senior police official told PTI.
Blue Whale, 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 police said.
The participants are then asked to carve the whale onto their body. The participants are given a total of 50 tasks, like watching horror movies alone, which they have to complete in 50 days.
According to media reports, the tasks also include harming oneself and waking up at unusual hours, with the final challenge requiring the player to commit suicide.
The underground game is active in multiple countries and has already claimed over 100 lives.
It’s creator, 22-year-old Philipp Budeikin, was arrested and sent to jail last month for inciting suicides.
“Police were probing if the death is related to Blue Whale suicide challenge,” Milind Khetle, Assistant Commissioner of Police (Meghwadi Division), told the agency.
Cops are also making enquiries with his friends and some members of social media groups in this connection, he said. “We could not meet his family members as they have gone to Nashik to perform post-death rituals,” he said.
The police will also examine the teenagers mobile phone and other gadgets as part of probe to know the exact reason behind the suicide, Khetle said.
The Meghwadi police have registered a case in the matter and probing the reason behind the suicide, Deputy Commissioner of Police Navinchandra Reddy said.
Following the incident, messages warning parents about the phenomenon have started circulating on instant messaging and social media platforms.Back to latest news