A video game-crazed 16-year-old boy in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh died on August 10 after playing PUBG, or PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, continuously for days without eating or drinking enough water.
Local news outlets reported that the boy fell sick due to severe dehydration as he had been skipping meals as well as drinking water.
After the family found out about his habits, they rushed him to a private hospital in Eluru Town, news outlets reported. Due to extreme diarrhoea, he had to undergo surgery. He could not survive the surgery and passed away while undergoing treatment.
Crime Investigation Department (CID) Superintendent of Police (SP-Cyber Crimes) G.R. Radhika was quoted as saying: “Cyber offenders will exploit children by offering online games. In some cases, they are taking minors into their control and are using them for illegal activities like drug peddling.”
She added: “The CID is organising a month-long awareness programme for students, parents, youth and the general public on different types of cybercrimes, including cyber stalking, bullying, honey traps, online prostitution, cyber grooming, e-commerce traps, job frauds, matrimony phishing, OTP (One-time password) frauds and other cyber offences.”
In the past, PUBG has faced criticism in different parts of the world. The game has also been banned in some countries for allegedly being harmful and addictive to younger players.
In March 2019, the video game was banned in the Indian state of Gujarat after the local government decided the game was "too addicting and violent" and an unnecessary distraction during exam season.