Queer, teen and coming out on social media? What it takes to survive the trolls

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12/10/2023

“Rest in pi** brother. You won’t be missed”. This was among the many similar comments on a post by Pranshu, a 16-year-old self-taught Instagram beauty influencer who was found hanging in his home in Ujjain on November 21. While the police are yet to identify the exact reason behind his death, Pranshu’s family and friends are convinced that he was a victim of cyberbullying. Pranshu was queer and used to post photos and videos on his Instagram handle wearing make-up, sarees, nail polish and other traditional wear. In one of his recent posts on Diwali, Pranshu wore a saree. This resulted in his comments section getting flooded by mocking and hate remarks. Days later, he allegedly hanged himself using his mother’s dupatta when she was not at home.

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