Malaysian teen commits suicide after running Instagram poll

World

15 May 2019

Teen kills self after Instagram-followers 'voted' for her to die

A 16-year-old girl in Malaysia allegedly committed suicide on Monday after running a social media poll, asking her followers to vote on whether she should choose "death" or "life".

According to police in Eastern Malaysia's Sarawak, the girl, whose name wasn't revealed, ran a poll on popular photo-sharing platform, Instagram, in which a majority of her followers voted for her to die.

Here's more.

The poll

'Really Important, Help Me Choose D/L': Girl before killing self

'Really Important, Help Me Choose D/L': Girl before killing self

Hours before jumping off the roof of a building, the girl ran an Instagram poll with the question: "Really Important, Help Me Choose D/L".

"According to a close friend of the victim, the 'D/L' meant 'Death/Life'," District Police chief Aidil Bolhassan was quoted as saying by The Borneo Post newspaper.

The Instagram poll also showed that 69% of her followers chose "D" (death).

Abetting suicide

Her Instagram followers could be guilty of abetting suicide

According to Ramkarpal Singh, a lawyer and a Member of the Malaysian Parliament, the girl's Instagram followers who voted for her to die could be "guilty of abetting suicide".

He urged the authorities to conduct an investigation into the circumstances that led to the teenager's death.

In Malaysia, those convicted of abetting a minor's suicide could face upto 20 years' imprisonment or death penalty.

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'Would she be alive if netizens discouraged her?,' asks Singh

"Would the girl still be alive today if the majority of netizens on her Instagram account discouraged her from taking her own life? Would she have heeded the advice of netizens to seek professional help had they done so?" Singh asked in a statement.

Details

Very unfortunate a young life was lost: Malaysian Minister

Very unfortunate a young life was lost: Malaysian Minister

Meanwhile, the Youth and Sports Minister of Malaysia, Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman, also called on the authorities for a probe into the girl's suicide.

He said that the rise in the suicide rates and mental health issues among youngsters must be taken seriously.

"It is very unfortunate a young life was lost in this manner," the Minister said.

Teenager was believed to have felt stressed: Aidil

"As many as 69% of the teenager's Instagram friends had supported the decision for her to kill herself... The teenager was believed to have felt stressed when her stepfather married a Vietnamese woman and seldom returned to their home," said Aidil, reported Malay Mail.

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