We have seen people attempting deadly stunts and recording on camera just to get popular on social media. Just recently, the death of two class X students in the Capital hit headlines while attempting to take a selfie with a running train for their online channels. In fact, India recorded the highest number of selfie deaths in the world over the past two years.
As scary and traumatising as that sounds, there is an equally insensitive flip side to the social-media-obsessed society — the one that whips out their phones to record and upload an incident before bothering to check if someone actually needs help. The fire safety meme (Exit the building before tweeting about it) is far closer to reality than we’d like to acknowledge. And we were forced to come face-to-face with the guilty truth of that when Facebook user Asavari Bhardwaj put up an emotional post earlier this month, soon after her cousin sister was killed in a road accident.
In a shocking incident, five teenagers met with a major accident where four of them succumbed to injures and one was still very critical. In a Facebook post, Bhardwaj wrote about her cousin Rishika Bassi, who was one of the victims killed in the car crash. She wrote about the ignorance and “insensitivity” of those present at the site, who took minutes to upload pictures of the crash online but didn’t even bother to check if the kids needed help – and had they done so, her sister could have still been alive.
Bhardwaj wrote, “People are so insensitive that they left my sister helpless breathing her last breaths calling for ma. Everyone at the site where clicking pictures and making videos and posting on social media. But not a single human came to help her. No one.”
The accident took place on January 6, and Bhardwaj shared the incident in the following days and urged people to drive safely and “please please help the people in need.”
This is not the first time such insensitivity of people on social media has come to light. Last year, the news of social workers clicking a selfie with a rape victim from Alwar had stunned us and caused huge furore online. Eventually, the officers from Rajasthan Commission for Women had resigned. But that does not negate the insensitivity of those taking the selfie.
And, now, this post brings us back to the same question.
Reportedly, a TOI report on the accident said the youngster was driving at “high speed” and the group had apparently “consumed alcohol” from a place not very far away from the accident site.
Read the full post here
On the 6th of January, my family got the biggest shock of our life. My lil sister (mamaji’s daughter) along with 3 other kids, lost their lives in a major car accident. The accident took place in ludhiana. I really don’t have words to describe the grief. But what makes it worse is that people and media have all kinds of things to talk about. People are so insensitive that they left my sister helpless breathing her last breaths calling for ma. Everyone at the site where clicking pictures and making videos and posting on social media. But not a single human came to help her. No one. If she would have got help on time, she would have been alive today. But well our lives are being governed by social media. Likes and shares are more important to us. I urge everyone to please teach their kids to drive safe and please please help the people in need. Also try and not make up stories about things. We must comfort the ones who have lost their loves ones not put them through more pain. Please. We can save each other if we try. Thank you. Rest in peace rishu. We will miss you and we love you always.
Not just this post, but the headlines we read on a regular basis constantly raise the question on where is humanity headed. Videos of people ignoring accident victims have been widely shared on various social media platforms, with the comments section filling up with outrage and dismay, but how much of that is really translating into executable empathy? That’s the question we need to be asking ourselves.