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In Shirdi to attend last rites, teen dies as TikTok 'gun pose' goes horribly wrong

Mumbai, Agencies | Updated : 14 June 2019, 11:21 AM
Police took Pratik to the government hospital where he was declared dead before admission. A case has been registered under IPC sections 302. (File Photo)
Police took Pratik to the government hospital where he was declared dead before admission. A case has been registered under IPC sections 302. (File Photo)

A teenager was killed after accidentally pressing the trigger of a country-made pistol, while shooting a clip for the social video app TikTok in Maharashtra's Ahmednagar district, police said Thursday. Pratik Wadekar (17) and his relatives were posing for a TikTok video with a country-made pistol one of his relatives had brought, police said. The social video app claims that it has 200 million users in India, of which 120 million are active every month. Pratik died on the spot during the incident, which took place in the temple town of Shirdi Wednesday evening, police said.

Incidentally, he and his relatives Sunny Pawar (20), Nitin Wadekar (27), an 11-year-old boy and another young man were in Shirdi for the last rituals of a family member, police said.

While sitting in their hotel room, they decided to shoot a video on mobile phone by posing with a country-made pistol one of Pratik's relatives had brought, and upload it on the TikTok app.

"The trigger of the pistol was accidentally pressed and the bullet hit Pratik," said inspector Anil Katke of Shirdi police station.

As he collapsed, others ran out of the room, and when the hotel staff, alerted by the gunshot, tried to stop them, one of them allegedly threatened to open fire and fled, the police officer said.

Police took Pratik to the government hospital where he was declared dead before admission. A case has been registered under IPC sections 302 (murder) and 307 (attempt to murder), police said, adding Sunny Pawar and Nitin Wadekar were arrested while another relative was yet to be traced.

Earlier, in an unrelated incident, a TikTok star was arrested by the Mumbai police in connection with a case of robbery. A resident of Kurla, Abhimanyu Gupta, with as many as 9 lakh followers on the video-sharing app, was arrested from his residence after Mumbai Police discovered evidence suggesting that Gupta may have been involved in a crime which took place in January of this year.

An elderly couple lodged a complaint at the Juhu Police on January 19 alleging that someone had broken into their house and made away with gold ornaments and a mobile phone. The total cost of the stolen goods was valued at Rs 4.75 lakh. A thorough inspection of CCTV camera footage led investigators to a clear image of the culprit.

Based on evidence, police arrested Gupta on May 28. However, they were unable to get him to tell anything about his alleged involvement in the robbery. After several days of intense interrogation, Gupta finally broke down in front of the police and confessed to having carried out the theft. Based on his inputs, police officials recovered stolen items from one of Gupta's friend's home who claimed that the accused had kept it with him by claiming them to be his wife's ornaments.

First Published: Friday, June 14, 2019 11:21 AM
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