An attempt to imitate professional fire breathers turned tragic when a 15-year-old boy died of burns in the Chengalpet Government hospital late on Thursday night. The incident happened when Jebin, a Class 10 student in Chennai tried to imitate the stunts performed by fire breathers.
Jebin Sham, a resident of Iyancherry was alone at home at the time of his incident. His mother works as a teacher in a government school in Chengalpet while his father works in at a star hotel in Meenambakkam, Chennai.
Taking a mouthful of kerosene, he spit the inflammable liquid onto a flame, so it would flare up the way he had seen performers doing so. However, some amount of kerosene fell on Jebinâ€™s clothes and in the process he caught fire. Shocked by this, he ran out of his house crying for help. His neighbours doused the fire using water and banana leaves and called an ambulance to take him to the hospital and alerted his parents.
Jebin was admitted into the Chengalpet Government Hospital late on Thursday night and treated for burns. He died a few hours later failing to respond to the treatment.
Speaking to TNM about the incident, the police officer who is investigating the case said, â€śThis seems like a freak accident. His parents told us that he was interested in science experiments and would normally do such experiments at home. He is the only child to his parents and is a shy boy who rarely mingles with others in his school. On the day of incident, he was alone at his house since it was quarterly holidays and he was preparing for his exams. We have booked a case under section 174 of CrPC (Unnatural Death) and are looking into more angles on this.â€ť
Cautioning children and adults from trying extreme stunts at home, the police officer added, â€śPeople must know the difference between professionally trained performance and untrained trial experiments. It is important to create awareness on this, especially among school students and minors.â€ť