Forgotten pit under Mumbai's newly opened flyover claims child's life

The swanky new flyover is bathed in light, but just below it, BMC officials have not bothered to fill up dug up roads and trenches. A six-year-old boy drowned in one such water-filled hole yesterday

A day after the Santacruz Chembur Link Road (SCLR) was thrown open to the public, a pit dug under the flyover by BMC men, who had conveniently forgotten to fill it up — claimed a life when a six-year-old child fell in the water-filled pit and drowned.

Rita Devi, mother of the six-year-old Abhishek Jaiswal, at the spot under the SCLR (below), where he drowned. PIC/SAYED Sameer Abedi

Six-year-old Abhishek Jaiswal, son of a migrant labourer who resided with his family below the SCLR, went missing on Friday. His body was discovered by his father Surinder Jaiswal in the open, water-filled trench, running over 20 feet long and five feet deep.

“The body was sent to Rajawadi Hospital for postmortem. He was playing in front of my eyes and suddenly disappeared,” said Rita Devi, the child’s mother. Urmila Singh, a neighbour, said over 250 families from Akbarpur in Uttar Pradesh, including the Jaiswals have been staying in shelter camps under the flyover in Kurla for a year.

Munna Alam, a local activist, who has filed a complaint with the BMC and has been helping the Jaiswals stated that the trench was dug by the BMC, apparently to make a gutter, which eventually remained filled with groundwater.

Investigating officer API Digode of Kurla Police Station said investigations were on and he would be recording statements of both the parents along with the BMC officials responsible for digging the trench.

Assistant commissioner Harshad Kale of L-ward said the people responsible for digging the trench had not been identified yet. “ Nevertheless, we have taken remedial action by barricading the area and ensuring that such accidents do not occur in the future,” he said.

  • Sam20-Apr-2014

    What an explanation and justification by Assistant commissioner Harshad Kale. Good sir. Claim few more lives by your negligence so that you can feel good and relieved. He cannot find person responsible for digging the trench. I guess the contractor ought to be his family member.

  • Dayanand Ahire20-Apr-2014

    What a shame on the part of BMC officials!!!!!!, How are the safety measures observed at site, What are the so called Engineers doing the supervision prior to handover of completed works are doing, Is this the standard maintained at site by the Engineers. Who are to blame for such irresponsible acts of Engineers and why not the team responsible for works should be terminated for showing negligence in their works causing human life.

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