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Andhra Pradesh man down with 'cold and fever' kills himself mistaking it for coronavirus

A middle-aged man in Andhra Pradesh village has committed suicide out of fear that he was infected with the dreaded Coronavirus (COVID-19), which has killed over 1000 in China. 50-year-old Balakrishna was suffering from cold and fever.

India TV News Desk India TV News Desk
New Delhi Updated on: February 12, 2020 13:42 IST
Coronavirus scare: Fearing he had coronavirus, Andhra man

Coronavirus scare: Fearing he had coronavirus, Andhra man kills self to save family

A middle-aged man committed suicide out of fear that he was infected with the dreaded Coronavirus (COVID-19), which has killed over 1000 in China. The deceased identified as Balakrishna (50) was suffering from hypertension. He killed self, after being discharged from hospital, fearing it would spread to his family.  The incident happened in Chittoor district on Monday but came to light only on Tuesday.

Balakrishna was treated in Tirupati last week and told that he had an infection. After two days in the hospital, he got better and returned to his village in Chittoor district on Sunday. But fearing that he was infected with COVID-19, Balakrishna isolated himself from his family. Before committing suicide, he surfed many videos about Coronavirus and also behaved weirdly with the family members by warning them against coming close to him.

“He remained aloof, saying he was infected with coronavirus and asked his family not to come near him. When they tried to approach him, he got agitated, threw stones at them and then locked himself in a room," district medical and health officer Dr M Penchalaiah said.

He was found hanging from a tree near his mother’s grave on the village outskirts. The tragic incident took place in Seshama Naidu Kandriga in Thottambedu block.

According to reports, he was suffering from cold and fever. He went to Tirupati hospital where doctors gave him medicines for viral infection and advised him to wear mask.  He wrongly thought he had coronavirus. However, doctors told Balakrishna he did not have coronavirus.

                    Coronavirus Symptoms
Common symptoms include a runny nose, headache, cough and fever. Shortness of breath, chills and body aches are associated with more dangerous kinds of coronavirus, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In serious cases, the virus can cause pneumonia.

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Image Source : WHO

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His son Balamurali said that his father panicked and started saying he needed to kill himself to keep other safe from him and coronavirus. “He began to pelt stones and things at us to keep us away from him,” Balamurali said.

Also Read: What is the cure for coronavirus? WHO answers 

“My father was all worried that the virus would spread to us. He hanged himself to save us,” Murali said.

Thottambedu police sub-inspector Venkata Subbaiah said no case was registered as the family refused to lodge a complaint. Till now, no Coronavirus case has been reported in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.

Also Read | Coronavirus claims 1,016 lives in China so far; over 40,000 cases reported

Also Read | WHO names coronavirus as “COVID-19”​

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