The men who drowned in the Vena dam on Sunday were uploading a Facebook live video of their boat ride, which led to the vessel tilting to one side and water gushing in, police said. “What we know so far is that one of the eight youth from Nagpur, Pankaj Doifode, was uploading a live video of the boat ride in the Vena dam about 25 km from Nagpur, between 6 pm and 6.30 pm.
His friends were talking about how much they were enjoying the ride. In the process, the boat appeared to have tilted to one side and paved the way for water to flow in. They then tried to balance it by going to the other flank of the boat, which led to water gushing in from that side. Eventually, the vessel sank into deep waters. Only three of the men, including a boatman, managed to save themselves, while eight drowned,” Superintendent of Police (Nagpur Rural) Shailesh Balkawde told The Indian Express.
The names of the deceased are Rahul Jadhav, Paresh Katike, Atul Bhoyar, Pankaj Doifode, Pratik Made and boatmen Roshan and Akshay Khandare, police said. Two of the friends, brothers Amol and Roshan Dodke, and boatman Atul Bawne managed to swim ashore. They have been admitted to a private hospital. All the men were aged between 25 and 30 and were employed in different companies, said the police.
One of them, Atul Bhoyar, was married while Paresh Katike had been engaged just a month ago. Pankaj Doifode, who streamed the video from his Facebook account, was the only son of his parents and had four sisters to support after his father’s death a few years ago, an officer said. Atul Bhoyar’s body had not been found by late Monday evening, the police said. In the video, the men could be heard saying that they were thoroughly enjoying the ride and most of them couldn’t swim.
“Pani re pani tera rang kaisa, we are in the middle of the water, enjoying a lot,” they can be heard saying. One of them chided a friend for being a “fool for not having joined in” (Mangya leka tu murkha ahe).” One of them was heard telling how his mother had always asked him to learn swimming. “Now I will do that,” he said. A friend, one Mangesh, can be heard warning them to take care or they would drown. “It will not happen,” one of the men from the boat said. Towards the end of the video, the men can be heard saying “bye, bye” to their friends.