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Denied TV time, Loyola boy hangs self

Ashish Kumar, aka Bittu, studied in Class VII at Loyola School in Bistupur

A Class VII student of Loyola School, Bistupur, committed suicide on Monday evening after his mother chided him for wanting to watch television during study hours.

The incident took the steel city’s suicide toll to 192, 34 of them being school and college students.

Police said 13-year-old Ashish Kumar — fondly known as Bittu at home — turned a bed sheet into a noose to hang himself from a ceiling fan at their Govindpur residence, 20km from the city, around 7.45pm when his mother was out purchasing vegetables.

According to what neighbours told police, Bittu returned home from school in the afternoon and sought permission to watch Dish TV to which his mother objected. In the evening, while his mother left for market, the sulking boy locked himself up in his room.

Father Dinesh Kumar, an employee with a private firm, was away at work.

Around 8pm, when his mother returned she found the door to her son’s room bolted from inside. Neighbours helped break open the door and rushed the boy to Tata Motors Hospital in Telco, where he was declared brought dead.

“Based on statement of neighbours, who said the boy was scolded for watching television, we have lodged a case of suicide. The room has been sealed. The body has been kept at the hospital morgue for autopsy, which will be done tomorrow (Tuesday),” said Govindpur OC Nand Kishore Shaw.

M. Ram, the director of suicide prevention centre Jeevan, said till November-end 191 people had executed their death wish, 33 of them students. “Of these 33, 65 per cent were girls. This generation is emotional beyond reason. Parents must learn to handle children issues more delicately,” Ram added.

In February, Tata Steel had funded a Jeevan campaign for school students. Billboards with helpline numbers were displayed near campuses for the troubled minds.

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