A group of youths in India has learned the hard way that not everyone will see the humour in YouTube pranks.
Seven YouTubers in Bengaluru, India have been arrested for dressing up as ghosts with long hair and attempting to scare unsuspecting motorists on the road at night. India Today reported that the youths were identified as Shan Malik, Navid, Sajil Mohammed, Mohammed Aqib, Sakib, Sayyed, and Yousuf Ahmed, aged between 20 to 22 years old.
Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCP) in Bengaluru North, Sashikumar told India Today that the youths were students who were looking to post their prank videos on YouTube for views.
"These boys after wearing these costumes tried stopping vehicles, they forced other vehicles to reverse and even tried to scare people who were sleeping out in the open," he said.
The youths were booked under sections of the Indian Penal Code related to wrongful restraint, insult with intent to provoke breach of peace, criminal intimidation and common intention. They have been released on bail. One video has made its way to social media platform Twitter where it was shared by user Harish Upadhya.
#Prank goes wrong. Seven youngsters who dressed up as ghosts and tried to scare road users arrested in #Bengaluru. Exorcism currently on at Yeshwanthpura police station @WeAreBangalore pic.twitter.com/8wEYwrkkxh— Harish Upadhya (@harishupadhya) November 11, 2019
In a separate report by News18, the police said they were alerted about the prank by concerned locals who suspected that the YouTubers were trying to rob motorists. The DCP shared police found a large number of videos in a phone belonging to one of the suspects.
"After interrogation and going through his profile, we do know their intention was only to commit pranks and upload the video on YouTube, ” the DCP said.
He added that he was worried the prank could have led to accidents on the road: "What if they had tried to stop a two-wheeler that was moving on high speed? There could have been an accident."
YouTube has a policy in place that does not allow users to post prank videos that could lead to serious harm. In the past, notable YouTubers like Jake Paul had a video, where he drove around blindfolded to perform the Bird Box Challenge, removed by the platform.
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