BITS Pilani student chokes self to death, Blue Whale suspected
A 19-year-old student of BITS Pilani-Hyderabad reportedly choked himself to death. Police are investigating if it has any connection to the Blue Whale 'challenge'. On Saturday morning, the parents found T Varun dead in his room, his head wrapped in a plastic bag. The second-year student was home at Gandipet in Telangana for vacations. Earlier, the SC refused to ban Blue Whale.
Since Varun got home a week ago, he had spent most of his time on his laptop, his parents told police. They spoke to him last on Friday night. No suicide note was found. "Family members suspect he could be playing Blue Whale. His laptop and cellphone were seized," police said. A case has been lodged under Section 174 (suspicious death) of the CrPC.
After a few alleged Blue Whale deaths in India, the government in August asked internet giants like Google, Facebook, Microsoft, WhatsApp, Yahoo and Instagram to remove all links to the dangerous online 'challenge'. Delhi Police had also issued an advisory to schools, colleges, parents and the public. It was planning an online preventive campaign related to the issue.
Earlier, the SC had noted that such 'games' are a "national problem" and urged the government to make a 10-minute informational video. Doordarshan and private channels were asked to telecast such videos during prime-time programs. Apart from Blue Whale, the court mentioned other deadly "games" online like Choking game, Fire Challenge, Salt and Ice Challenge, Eyeball challenge, Cutting challenge and Human Embroidery game.