A teenage boy in India died after accidentally shooting himself while taking a selfie. Ramandeep Singh, 15 was posing with his father’s.32 caliber pistol on Friday evening when he accidentally pulled the trigger, according Manoj Kumar, Deputy Superintendent of Police in Pathankot, Punjab state.
Indian teen dies after accidentally shooting himself in the head while taking selfie. https://t.co/dtp07m5QUd— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) May 2, 2016
His neighbors heard the gunshot from his house while his parents were away when the incident occurred. Singh was taken to a hospital in Ludhiana, with the bullet lodged in his head and died there Sunday.
The gun, a.32-calibre pistol licensed to Ramandeep’s father Gurkirpal Singh, was usually kept in a wardrobe in the house, according to police chief Manoj Kumar.
“The boy’s father and family said that he was trying to take a selfie with his gun,” said the police chief.
India’s gun laws allow citizens to buy firearms with a government-issued license. The process, however, is tedious and expensive. There are six million registered guns in India, and up to an estimated 40 million illegal firearms.
The number of selfie related deaths in India is surprisingly high. With this incident, the count for selfie related deaths reached 11 for this year. Such is the craze for selfie in India that the authorities have labeled some popular but dangerous places as no selfie zones after many harmless self photo session turned to be the last for the photographers, Inquirer reported.
A man in Kerala was gored by an irate elephant while posing for a selfie at an Indian temple last month, while a teenager in Chennai also lost his life after posing near railway tracks. These cases shed light to perils of seemingly harmless smartphones which have made India their second favorite market after China.
Indians have also been killed falling out of boats, off cliffs and into canals in recent times while making an attempt to capture their photos in dangerous situations.
According to the Telegraph, around half of the 27 recorded deaths worldwide resulting from self-taken photographs took place in India last year.
India’s largest business hub Mumbai has has set up 16 “no selfie zones” at popular but dangerous locations after a tragic accident claimed two lives in January.
Selfie culture is rampant in India. From prime minister to Bollywood stars, everyone is following the trend and so are normal people. But while going out of their way for a picture of their own, they often overlook the dangers of it. Though selfies seem harmless if taken in a safe way they still have some mental effects.
Selfies are bad for social connection and the selfie crazed mind can only give selective attention to the details of environment. Too much focus on selfies also decreases the ability to multitask and besides our mind is programmed to fear snakes not take selfies, says Pamela Routledge of psychology today.
There are also unseen dangers of the selfie sticks which are a common vacation equipment these days. According to Inside Edition, there’s a growing movement to ban them from certain public places, like in museums and galleries for fear they may damage priceless works of art. Disney World has now started banning selfie sticks from their rides.
Disney is saying they do not want selfie sticks on rides,” Inside Edition‘s Les Trent said to Fromm in an interview.
“I agree with them. I think that’s prudent. It would be very dangerous, with the velocity of the rides and your hands. If somebody would let it go and all of a sudden, it [flies] into the crowd,” said Fromm.