14-Year-Old Girl Ends Life After Mom Takes Away Her Cellphone

A 14-year-old allegedly killed herself after her mother rebuked her for taking her cell phone to school.

The deceased teen was found hanging from the ceiling fan in her home at Balurghata, in Kolkata, India on Thursday, Nov.18, police said.

According to the police, the deceased girl, a 10th-grade student, had been using her mother’s phone to attend online classes during the Covid-19 lockdown. Her mother would leave her phone at home when she went to work, police said.

However, after schools in the state reopened on Tuesday, nearly after 20 months of shutdown, the mother insisted on taking her phone to work.

On Wednesday, the mother took away her phone from the teen. This angered the girl, who then got into a heated argument with her mother, police said. 

On Thursday morning, the girl’s younger brother found his sister hanging from the ceiling fan in her bedroom.

“My daughter had become addicted to the cellphone. As Madhyamik (board) exam was due shortly and since the physical classes had begun, my wife had rebuked her on Wednesday for being hooked on to the cellphone and took it away from her. On Thursday, both of us had left for work by 6.15 am. My son found her hanging around 7 am,” the teen girl’s father told the Times of India.

Experts say that the pandemic has made children over-dependent on electronic gadgets and that this may have disastrous consequences.

“It was pretty much expected that once the pandemic and the lockdown restrictions ease down, the dangers of over-reliance on digital media will turn out to be a serious concern, and tackling the withdrawal symptoms will become a major challenge. The entire problem has been triggered by unrestrained screen addiction,” said child psychologist Devika De.

Psychiatrist Siladitya Ray said that phone addiction and increased screen time can lead to mental instability and is dangerous enough to tear apart the cohesive fabric of human society.

“The most reliable way to tackle this crisis is to teach children and help them to develop an insight into the core issue that excessive screen time leads to addictive behavior which eventually might go out of hand and generate frustration and disgruntlement. However, parents need to be patient,” said Ray.

Rope, suicide Representation image. Photo by Eva Blue on Unsplash

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