Bullied teenager who performed with Ariana Grande took her own life

Bullied teenager, 14, who performed in choir with Ariana Grande at concert after Manchester Arena terror attack killed herself by jumping in front of train, inquest hears

  • Uma Gupta, 14, left a friend’s party before taking her life at East Didsbury station 
  • Inquest hears Uma was left suicidal after a bully at school threatened to stab her
  • The teenager kept a secret diary, which read: ‘Don’t be upset. I wasn’t happy’
  • Help is out there for anyone who is struggling. Call Samaritans for free on 116 123

A bullied teenager who performed in a choir alongside Ariana Grande after the Manchester Arena terror attack took her own life by jumping in front of a train, an inquest has heard.

Uma Gupta, 14, left a friend’s party upset in March 2019 before heading to East Didsbury railway station, where she died.

An inquest has heard how the teenager kept a secret diary, that revealed she was being bullied and her experiences with suicidal thoughts.

Manchester Coroner’s Court heard how a bully had threatened to stab Uma at Parrs Wood High School in Manchester.

Uma Gupta, 14, died at East Didsbury railway station in Manchester in March 2019. An inquest heard she had left a friend’s party upset earlier that night 

Manchester Coroner’s Court heard how a school bully had previously threatened to stab Uma, who had also been left upset after a relative took their life in 2018

On the night of her death she left a party at a friend’s house after  becoming upset and saying she wanted ‘kill herself’.

She told friends her mum was going to pick her up but instead she walked to East Didsbury station.

Uma, a pupil at Parrs Wood High School in East Didsbury, was hit by a train heading towards Manchester Piccadilly at about 10pm.

In the months before she was killed she made numerous diary entries expressing her unhappiness and desire to take her own life, the inquest heard.

One entry, from 10 October 2018, read: ‘Don’t be upset. I wasn’t happy and things weren’t going to change.

Uma was part of Parrs Wood Harmony Choir, which performed on stage with Ariana Grande at the One Love concert in 2017, after the Manchester Arena terror attack

In the months before she was killed she made numerous diary entries expressing her unhappiness and desire to take her own life, the inquest heard

‘Just imagine I was never here. I love my family and friends. I planned this for ages.’

As she left left home on the night she died Uma’s parents told her ‘how beautiful she looked’.

They said: ‘She seemed happy.’

But at the party Uma’s mood changed, witnesses said. 

She began sobbing in the kitchen and bathroom, saying: ‘I don’t want to be here, I want to kill myself.’

The inquest heard Uma, from Didsbury, was upset by the suicide of a distant relative in September 2018.

In the months after his death she researched suicide methods online. 

In November 2018 Uma’s family began to notice a change in her mood, saying she was often ‘low and withdrawn’.

On December 21, that year, following a party at a friend’s house, she was taken to Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital by police after being found in the street banging her head against the floor saying she ‘wanted to die’.

During the psychiatric assessment she revealed she was being bullied at school by a girl who had ‘threatened to stab her’. 

Paul Heron, head of learning at Parrs Wood, said the school had been aware of the bullying and had taken several steps to tackle it, including the exclusion of the bully.

Three months before her death, police had taken Uma to Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital by police after being found in the street banging her head against the floor saying she ‘wanted to die’

A court heard how Uma had researched suicide methods online, prior to her death at East Didsbury Railway Station in 2019

He said there had been no reports of any other incidents after mid-January 2019.

Mr Heron said: ‘Nothing was reported. It didn’t seem like anything was wrong.’ 

Uma was a member of Parrs Wood Harmony Choir, which performed onstage with Ariana Grande at the One Love concert following the Manchester Arena terror attack.

Parrs Wood headteacher, Mark McElwee, described Uma’s death as ‘very upsetting for the whole school community’.

He said a number of new measures had been introduced in school following her death.

They included a confidential bullying reporting line, the introduction of ‘mental health champions’, staff trained as mental health first aiders, and the introduction of an ‘ask twice’ policy regarding pupils’ well-being.

Senior coroner Nigel Meadows recorded a conclusion of suicide.

Mr Meadows said: ‘The reasons why any person wishes to harm themselves are many and complex.

Uma’s family described her as the ‘life and soul of the party’. They added that she ‘will be missed by everyone’ 

‘Some of them may never be understood. Many people never leave a note or message – there is simply no explanation as to their feelings.

‘In respect of the issue which has been described as bullying there was a conflict in July 2018 and other contacts that Uma had with the young lady in question.

‘There were allegations of bullying, I accept that is the case.

‘But Uma’s diary is consistent and clear about her mental health.

‘I am satisfied that Uma is the only person who caused herself to leave the platform in front of that the train.

‘I am satisfied she deliberately did that and all the available evidence is that’s what she intended to do.’

In a statement, Uma’s parents said: ‘Uma was always the life and soul of the party and didn’t struggle to make friends.

‘She loved life and will be missed by everyone. She lit up a room whenever she walked in. The family home is not the same since she died. It’s very quiet.’

  • If you are struggling, help is out there. Please call Samaritans on 116 123. 

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