A day after a five-year-old girl drowned in a swimming pool inside the Bhabha Atomic Research (BARC) complex in Anushkati Nagar in Trombay, her father said she drowned because the rope used to tie a swimming drum float around her was missing.
Anushka Kumar’s father, Neeraj, who is a scientific officer with BARC, has demanded an FIR against the swimming coach, the life guards and the pool management. While the police have lodged an accidental death report, they said an FIR might be registered if the investigation reveals any negligence.
Neeraj Kumar said his two daughters, aged 5 and 12 years, had gone for a swim in the pool on the BARC campus, at 3.30 pm on Thursday. There are two swimming pools, one for children which is 2-feet deep, and one for adults, which has water depth starting at 4.5 feet.
“Usually, my daughter, who is over 3 feet tall, swims in the adult pool after wearing the swimming drum. But since the rope used to tie the drum was missing, she could not tie it around herself. Both my daughters entered the adult pool. My elder daughter told the coach that Anushka did not have a drum, but still he allowed her to enter the pool,” said Kumar.
Minutes after entering the pool, while her elder sister swam ahead, Anushka was struggling to stay afloat. “One of the swimmers tried to draw the attention of the coach and 5-6 lifeguards who were present, but no one saw. It was when somebody called out again that they jumped into the pool and pulled her out. They rushed her to the hospital where she was declared dead,” said Kumar.
“I want an FIR to be registered against the swimming coach, the life guards and those responsible for the management of the pool. As of now, the police have taken an accidental death report in the matter,” he added.
Senior Inspector of Trombay police station, Prakash Salvi, said: “While we have registered an accidental death report as of now, we are investigating. There is a probability that the accidental death may be converted into an FIR if we find there was any negligence.”