Child falls in pit, dies

Firemen pull out granny who jumped in to save him

A four-year-old boy died after he fell in an open manhole late on Wednesday night at south Delhi’s Jaitpur area. His grandmother who jumped into the manhole to rescue him was saved by police and fire department officers who had arrived at the scene soon after the incident.

The incident led to over a hundred locals, including the victim’s relatives, holding a protest at Meethapur Chowk on Thursday morning and they shouted slogans against the local legislator and the ward councillor.

They alleged that sheer negligence by the South Delhi Municipal Corporation authorities caused the boy’s death.

Hailing from Phagwara district of Punjab, the victim, Gurpreet Singh, lived with her grandmother Balwinder Kaur at Jaitpur.

She was taking care of the kid ever since his parents separated three years ago and his mother Neeru began living in Punjab. He was returning to his home with his grandmother after meeting his mother when the accident took place.

The duo had arrived at their home in Jaitpur’s block H by an autorickshaw around 11:30 pm on Wednesday. While Balwinder was busy paying the driver, the boy headed for his home, only a few steps away.

“The lane was dark because of a power failure. The boy failed to locate the six-foot-deep open manhole and fell inside,” said a senior police officer.

“His grandmother noticed him falling and jumped into the manhole to save him after screaming for help. Locals immediately arrived and called us,” the officer added.

While the old woman was rescued by the fire department officers, the victim’s body was found around 50 meters away from the spot where he fell. The fire department had to use a crane to break parts of the road after initial efforts to track the victim went in vain. The entire process took over two hours.

Protest

The next morning, locals held a protest and demanded action against the guilty civic officials whose alleged that negligence led to the death. The protests caused traffic jams in the area for almost an hour.

Senior police officers arrived at the scene and pacified them by assuring them of immediate action against the culprits. A case has been registered.

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