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Six children drown in Barmer

Kids decide to take a bath in pond on way to school; only one survives.

By: Express News Service | Jaipur |
August 10, 2016 4:13:21 am

SIX children, all aged between six and eight years, drowned in a pond at Khoksar village in Barmer, officials said on Tuesday.

“Seven children decided to take a bath in the pond while going to school. Six of them drowned in a pit within the pond. One child somehow managed to escape and informed the villagers, who then pulled out the bodies,” said Barmer District Collector Sudhir Kumar Sharma.

The survivor has been identified as Gaja Ram.

“It had rained in the area. The children were excited and decided to take a bath in the pond. Inside the water body, there was a taaka — a traditional pit created to collect water — which had become invisible after the rain. Narrating the tragedy, the survivor said that the victims had tried to save each other but got drowned one by one,” said Baitu SDM Arjun Tahir Samma.

“Though the pond is not deep, the old pit is about 6-7 foot deep,” said Dev Karan Sharma, Gira Block Development Officer.

The kin of the deceased were given Rs 50,000 each from Chief Minister’s Relief Fund.

Meanwhile, owing to heavy rainfall in parts of Rajasthan, the Army, the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), State Disaster Response Force (SDRF) and the Rajasthan Armed Constabulary (RAC) have been deployed in various places across the state, even as the state government asserted that it had been successful in preventing any flood-related death so far.

In Pali district, however, ADM B K Chandoliya said: “One Pintu, 25, had gone to bathe in Sukri river but due to the force of water, he was reportedly swept away. We are trying to trace him and can’t confirm whether he is survived.”

Disaster Management and Relief Department secretary Rohit Kumar said that the Army, NDRF, SDRF and RAC have been deployed in a few districts as preventive measure. “NDRF and SDRF have been deployed in Bhilwara, Chittorgarh, Pali, Jhalawar and Jodhpur. The Army has been deployed in all these places, barring Jhalawar and Jodhpur. RAC has been deployed in Pali, Jhalawar and Jodhpur districts,” Kumar said.

“Aditionally, we have alerted the Indian Air Force and its helicopters are on a standby,” he said.

Parts of Chittorgarh, Pali and Jodhpur districts received heavy rainfall in the last 24 hours. The meteorological department predicted little change in the next 24 hours.

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