Two days after he was injured during a district-level swimming competition in Gurgaon, 11-year-old Sagar Rana was taken in for surgery at AIIMS Trauma Center in Delhi Saturday.
“His upper body is paralysed, his arms are not moving and there is very little movement in his legs as well… doctors said they will only be able to ascertain the long-term impact of the injuries after the surgery,” said his father, Dinesh Rana.
Sagar, a resident of Gandhi Nagar in Gurgaon, studies in St Crispin’s Senior Secondary School. He was injured while warming up for the competition organised at the CRPF camp in Kadarpur, Gurgaon.
Sagar’s relatives claimed the water in the pool was too shallow for such a competition and when he dived in, “his head hit the base of the pool and he hurt himself”. Rana said, “He told me then and says so even now, that when he jumped, he couldn’t even see anything because the water was so green and dirty. He didn’t see the base of the pool before his head hit it.”
Sagar is a competitive swimmer and has participated in several competitions, including the junior national aquatics championships in Bangalore this year, said his father. “He has been swimming for the last four years. This is his passion. Before I dropped him off to warm up for the competition Thursday, he told me he would win gold. Now, we don’t know if he will be able to swim again.”
Dr Amit Gupta, AIIMS spokesperson, said, “Sagar Rana has cervical spine injury, which is a fairly serious injury. It is not life threatening, but there is a possibility that he could be paralysed for the rest of his life.”
Two other participants in the event also, reportedly, sustained minor injuries. However, the competition, which ended Friday, was not called off. Following Sagar’s injury, his uncle, Ravinder Malik, lodged an FIR at Badshahpur police station.
“A case has been filed against the organiser of the event, Sandeep Tokas, under sections 336 (endangering life and personal safety of others) and 337 (causing hurt by an act which endangers human life) of the IPC,” said Praveen Malik, SHO of Badshahpur police station. Tokas could not be reached for comment despite repeated attempts.