‘Know Your Police’ sessions to create awareness among teens; dangers of deadly Blue Whale Challenge: Coimbatore City police
Even as the Coimbatore City police are creating awareness among youngsters about the dangers of the Blue Whale Challenge, a ‘Know Your Police’ session on Thursday drew attention to the fact that many
COIMBATORE/MADURAI: Even as the Coimbatore City police are creating awareness among youngsters about the dangers of the Blue Whale Challenge, a ‘Know Your Police’ session on Thursday drew attention to the fact that many middle school students were well aware of the game’s existence and that many of them might have tried their hands at it.
Students of a private school, who came to the Police Commissioner’s office on Thursday, after visiting various sections including the modern Control Room there, had a session with Deputy Commissioner (L&O) S Lakshmi. During the session, a class-7 student told the officials that he used to play ‘Blue Whale Challenge’. However, he later denied it.
“Though the boy first said he played it, he later denied it. He did not reveal any more information. He said he was just aware of the game, but had never played it. He became aware of it through WhatsApp. We even questioned him separately, but he was not ready to reveal anything more. We advised him not to play the game, if he is indeed doing so,” said the DC.
The game was banned on August 15, but as students have more exposure to online contents, they might have had access to ‘Blue Whale Challenge’ earlier, sources said. This interaction with the students has made the police more concerned about the safety of youngsters. Accordingly, Commissioner A Amalraj has ordered that awareness programmes be conducted among students so that they do not play the game, if they have already been exposed to it.
“The City police team and the ‘Know Your Police’ team will reach out to schools and colleges and spread awareness about it. If anyone come to know about any student or child who plays the game, they can file a complaint or pass the information to the police through WhatsApp number 8190000100,” the Commissioner said.
Meanwhile, a day after a 19-year-old college student succumbed to Blue Whale Challenge in Madurai, Collector K Veera Raghava Rao on Thursday ordered officials to bring internet cafes under stricter scrutiny.
He said that the internet cafes across the district would be under continuous monitoring and a special cell comprising officials from social welfare, child protection, education and health departments to look into complaints about the game.
Rising death toll
Since the game originated in 2013, some 100 deaths across the world have been linked to the Blue Whale Challenge. The game has been blamed for at least three teenage deaths in India this month, and a mayali mother had come forward earlier in the month saying her son had taken his own life last year, after playing the game. Once hooked, get threatening messages if they hesistate at a later stage.