How Facebook and Indian police combined to save a suicidal man
How Facebook and Indian police combined to save a suicidal man
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Thanks to a well-coordinated operation involving Facebook (FB) officials in Ireland and the personnel attached to the Delhi, Mumbai and Navghar unit of the Thane (rural) police, the suicide bid of a 24-year-old man was successfully thwarted in Bhayandar. The man Vimal (name changed) who had left for Mumbai a fortnight after a quarrel with his wife in Delhi, started posting ‘Facebook Live’ videos indicating his intentions of committing suicide on Saturday evening. After identifying suicidal activity from the FB account, officials from Ireland passed the information along with contact details to the cyber cell of the Delhi police, which immediately traced the address to a locality in East Delhi.

The police team found that the FB account was registered on the number of a woman. But it also came to light that the FB account was being used by her husband who had left home after a fight with her. Although she was unaware about her husband’s current address in Mumbai, she gave Delhi police his number.

The cyber cell sleuths got in touch with DCP (Cyber) Dr Rashmi Karandikar from Mumbai police, whose team not only established contact and tried to counsel Vimal, but simultaneously alerted the Navghar police about his presence in Bhayandar. “Following information by our Mumbai counterparts, special teams were deployed to locate the man. However, he did not stay at the specified address. After a couple of hours, we finally managed to establish contact with him and he agreed to meet us. Our personnel met him at a hotel and spoke at length about his psychological distress and counselled him before dropping him at a flat in the Goddev area of Bhayandar (east), where he was staying along with his colleagues. We also asked his roommates to take care of him,” said Senior Police Inspector of Navghar police station Sampatrao Patil. The man, who works as a cook at a hotel in the Golden Nest area, was under stress apparently due to financial and other issues, which had cropped up in his life due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

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