8-year-old sets herself ablaze to become intelligent

8-year-old sets herself ablaze to become intelligent

According to her parents, the child was an avid watcher of soap operas. She especially liked one particular serial that promoted superstitious beliefs. Representative Image

Like many other students, eight-year-old Ragini (name changed), a resident of Uttar Pradesh's Bhadohi district, about 250 kilometres from here, also wanted to be good in her studies.

But instead of achieving success through hard work, she tried to make her dream come true by doing something that proved to be near-fatal for her.

Ragini, according to her parents, was an avid watcher of soap operas. She especially liked one particular serial that promoted superstitious beliefs. She had seen in the serial that a girl performed some occult practices and then set herself afire to become intelligent.

According to the reports, on Monday, Ragini went to her school carrying kerosene oil and a matchbox. She went into the toilet of the school immediately and set herself afire.

Her younger brother, who was a student of second standard at the same school, saw her going to the toilet and followed her. He shouted when he saw smoke emanating from the toilet. The door was broken and Ragini was rushed to the hospital by the school staff.

Police said that she had sustained 35 per cent burn injuries and was referred to a higher centre in the neighbouring Varanasi district. Her condition was stated to be stable.

Her father, who owned a small shop in Ghosia Nagar area, said that she had taken such a bizarre and shocking step under the influence of the TV serial. The school authorities confirmed that Ragini had brought kerosene oil and matchbox with her.

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