World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) enjoys a huge fan base in India. The sport is a high risk one and people love watching their favourite superstars going head to head in the ring. We also get tempted to try these at our home but these can lead to serious accidents.
- A Class-VII student, a big fan of (WWE) stunts, allegedly choked to death in his Duttabad home while apparently imitating a wrestling move with a nylon belt.
- Parents of the boy named Bikash Sardar, said the boy had tied one end of the belt to a bamboo shaft that ran across their ceiling and the other end around his neck.
- His parents found him hanging between the bed and the wall.
- His father, Sunil, who works as a mason, said:
“He was a huge fan of WWE and was always hooked on to the cellphone, watching videos. He may have tried to imitate stunts he had seen in the videos with the belt and suffocated to death. We don’t think he committed suicide. It must have been an accident”
- According to Sunil, the last video Bikash had been watching was a tag-team match between the teams of John Cena and CM Punk against Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose.
- A neighbour of Bikash, said:
“He was possibly trying a stunt with the belt around his neck. He may not have realized that he could choke. Had it been a suicide, the boy would have climbed to the bamboo shaft using a stool or a chair”
- Going by the words of the police, Bikash came back from school at around 5 pm and his parents found him dead at around 5:45 pm on returning from the bank.
“Seeing his feet dangling in the air, my wife almost fainted. I brought him down with the help of a neighbour, but he was already dead. I passed out from grief”
- He was declared “dead on arrival” when he was taken to Bidhannagar Subdivisional Hospital by the neighbours.
- The police is still unsure if it’s a suicide or accident.
“It is difficult to ascertain if it was a case of suicide or accident. But we have sent the body for post-mortem and have started an unnatural death case,”
- Bikash’s friends and family members revealed that he was a huge fan of WWE and would watch wrestling videos on his father’s cellphone constantly.
- TOI had access to the phone and found multiple WWE videos in the YouTube search and viewing history, and some were even saved on a playlist.
- Neighbours even saw him imitating moves performed by WWE superstars.
- However, there is no concrete proof that Bikash died of imitating WWE moves and the connect to WWE is purely speculative.
- WWE released an official statement following the death of Bikash which goes like:
“While WWE offers its condolences to Bikash Sardar’s family, he could not have been imitating a WWE manoeuvre because tying a belt or anything around one’s neck doesn’t relate to anything seen on WWE programming.”
- Psychiatrist Jai Ram’s take on it:
“We need to educate the children that what they see in the virtual world is often staged. Only proper counselling can deter children from such acts”
- Psychiatrist Siladitya Roy’s view:
“Parents need to keep a check on the kind of things their children watch and stay alert about any change in behaviour. If needed, parents should monitor what kids watch videos and inform them about the ill effects”
WWE shows come with a disclaimer cautioning the viewers not to try the moves at home but the youth usually ignore it. We should really be mature enough to understand that the superstars and trained athletes and we are not. Be safe!