Malayali kids search for pokéstops, worry parents

Gamers are seeking pokeman characters on their mobile all over the capital

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The other day, a second year engineering student randomly walked into Mannanthala police station in the capital city playing Pokemon Go game, giving his father a chill. The location-based augmented reality mobile game involved walking around to catch imaginary characters that are placed at GPS tagged location.

The game requires people to turn on their Internet data, GPS and camera to get a real-life experience of chasing characters. As the game turns into obsession, people who walk searching on their mobile phones are now present all over cities.

“My son was earlier not keen to go to his ancestral place located one kilometre away. He went there only after realising it’s a pokéstop. He walks into government press, police station and temples to catch pokemon characters, sometimes at night. This doesn’t look fun as their attention and interactions with other people are non existent,” complained Mr Binu (name changed) of Mannanthala.

While the game helps couch potato video gamers to sweat outdoors, the obsession is taking over. Initially, parents in city were curious, but now they are anxious about children’s safety. By now, it’s a known thing that temples and religious institutions are pokéstops where you can find characters and earn more points. Lijo John from the city, who works with an NGO is happy that he found his character ‘Eevve’ inside the Katpadi Railway station in Tamil Nadu.

“In Thiruvananthapuram, there are pokéstops at St Joseph’s press parking space, RDR auditorium. I even went to pokéstops at four temples,” he revealed. “There are beasts at Pazhavangadi temple and Jagathy Krishnan temple. I got a lesson about dangers of the game only when an SUV sped so close to me at Thirumala,” said male nurse Manoj Menon. When contacted Thiruvananthapuram city police commissioner Sparjan Kumar said that they are yet to hear about trespassing and traffic offence cases caused by game.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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