Pokemon hunters, you are the hunted, warns a Sikh priest

Keep calm and don’t Pokemon.
Keep calm and don’t Pokemon.
Image: Reuters/Kim Kyung-Hoon
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A Sikh priest in the UK has advised people to go slow on their Pokemon Go obsession.

In a four-minute video, Bhai Harinder Singh, part of a Sikh sect based in the UK, is seen asking followers not to go overboard with the game that has become a global rage. ”Capture your own mind instead of capturing Pokemon,” the video shows Singh saying at a gurudwara in England’s Wolverhampton city on July 30, according to a report by Buzzfeed.

Pokemon Go, a virtual reality game inspired by the Japanese animated characters—or Pokemon—was first released on July 6 in the US, Australia, and New Zealand. It has become a blockbuster hit for game-maker Nintendo. Days after it was launched in the US, the app surpassed Twitter’s daily active users, with players spending more time playing Pokemon Go than on Facebook, according to a July 13 report by TechCrunch.

Singh said the game’s addictive effects are taking over people’s minds and their time. “We think we are capturing Pokemon but the game is actually capturing us,” said Singh, part of the Nirvair Khalsa Jatha, which focuses on young and modern Sikhs living outside India.

But he doesn’t dismiss the game completely. “I’m not saying don’t play, but don’t just waste all of your days on these games,” Singh says in the video.

Concerns over Pokemon Go are mounting in some countries where players have met with minor and major accidents. There have been reports from the US and Australia of car crashes and people falling off cliffs while playing the game. In the run up to the app’s launch in Japan, the government even issued safety tips for players.