Indian Student Death in Massachusetts Sparks Online Outrage and Misinformation

Fall River, Massachusetts – The recent death of a young Indian student in Massachusetts has sparked widespread outrage and misinformation in India, where sensationalized headlines have falsely claimed he was murdered in Boston as part of a growing trend of anti-Indian violence in the United States.

Abhijeeth Paruchuru, a 20-year-old student at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, was tragically found dead in a car in Freetown on March 8. Massachusetts authorities have determined that he died by suicide. Dave Procopio, spokesperson for the Massachusetts State Police, stated, “We found significant evidence indicating that he took his own life.”

Despite the official determination, Indian news outlets have been circulating a different narrative about Paruchuru’s death, spreading inaccurate and sensationalized stories. Some reports falsely claim that he was a Boston University engineering student who was murdered on campus, leading to unfounded allegations from his family.

These misleading reports have raised concerns about the safety of Indian students in the United States, especially in light of other incidents of violence against Indians across the country. While legitimate cases of violence exist, the exaggerated coverage in Indian media is creating an inflated perception of the risks faced by Indian students.

Safety concerns for Indian students studying abroad are significant, given that the United States remains a top destination for higher education among Indians, with a substantial number enrolled every academic year. The hyperbolic coverage in Indian media is fueling fear and anxiety among students and their families.

The Indian consulate in New York has clarified that initial investigations into Paruchuru’s death have ruled out foul play, dispelling the false claims of murder circulating in India. Despite efforts to correct the record, the misinformation continues to spread, adding to the distress and confusion surrounding Paruchuru’s tragic death.

Paruchuru, originally from South Windsor, Connecticut, had moved to the United States at a young age and was pursuing a degree in Computer & Information Science at UMass Dartmouth. His family, deeply upset by the inaccurate reports of his death, remembers him as a well-behaved and introverted young man who had a passion for online gaming.

As the misinformation continues to circulate online, it is crucial to remember the facts surrounding Paruchuru’s death and avoid contributing to the spread of false narratives. The tragic loss of a young life should serve as a reminder of the importance of responsible reporting and the need to prioritize mental health and support for students studying abroad.