Nursery school boy’s death: NHRC issues notice to SDMC, Delhi Police

Delhi: South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) and Delhi Police authorities have been asked by the National Human Rights Commission to submit detailed reports over the death of a five-year-old boy after falling into an open septic tank in a school run by the civic body.

NHRC has taken suo motu cognisance of media reports on the incident that occurred on January 27 in west Delhi’s Kapashera area at around 11:30 am.

Nursery student Ankit fell into the septic tank while playing with his friends. “The Commission, expressing serious concern over the negligence on the part of school administration, has issued notices to the Commissioner, SDMC, and Deputy Commissioner of Police (South West), Delhi, calling for detailed reports in the matter within four weeks,” NHRC said in a release.

The Commission noted the boy “screamed” for help following which a labourer, Ram Singh, who was working at a nearby construction site, jumped into the tank and fished out the body.

“He was taken to Columbia Asia Hospital in Gurgaon where the doctors declared he was brought dead. The boy’s family, police and civic body were not immediately informed about the incident and the call to the Police Control Room was made at around 1.30 PM almost two hours after the incident,” it said. Police had registered a case of negligence and had taken statements of the eyewitnesses as well as the school officials and parents of the boy. SDMC had also ordered an inquiry by its Additional Commissioner (Education).

A team of doctors from AIIMS along with forensic experts will on Monday visit Ryan International School in South Delhi and examine the water tank where six-year-old Divyansh Kakrora, a Class I student of the school was found dead.

The doctors, who had prepared the preliminary post-mortem report of the boy, want to examine the spot where the incident took place before submitting the final report.

The AIIMS’ preliminary post-mortem report indicated that Divyansh’s death was due to drowning. There were no external injuries on his body that could lead to death. The report pointed to asphyxiation (suffocation) due to aspiration of fluid into air passages as being the probable cause of the death, said sources at AIIMS.

Ramhit Meena, father of Divyansh, has blamed the school authorities for his son’s death. “It is a conspiracy by the school authorities and someone in the staff must be involved in the incident. I received a call from the school and I rushed to emergency ward at the hospital, where I found the principal at the entrance. I kept asking everyone what had happened but nobody responded. Then the principal took me to the doctor, who informed me that my son was brought dead to the hospital,” he said.

Meena, who is a paramedic at AIIMS, further said, “When I sought answers from the principal, she asked me to stay put, claiming that it is for our own good. When I insisted, I was yelled at.”

However, the principal of the school had refuted the allegation and claimed that Divyansh was a special child, who was “hyperactive” and had a tendency of running away from the classroom. She, however, could not explain how the child fell into the water tank beneath the amphitheatre of the school.

Divyansh was last seen before the seventh period on Saturday, which was around 12.20 pm.

The authorities then started looking for him and after sometime he was found floating inside the pit which is used as a water storage tank. It is under the amphitheatre in the school’s playground. He was then rushed to a hospital, where he was declared brought dead.