Three workers drown while cleaning a well

Kathmandu, August 3

Three persons, including a senior citizen, drowned in the course of cleaning a well on the premises of a house in Kapurdhara, Kathmandu Metropolitan City-26, today, police said.

The deceased have been identified as Megh Barna Gautam, 70, the house owner; Ashok Kumar, 36, of Hajipur, India; and Ramesh Chaudhary, 23, of Tikapur, Kailali. The two youths lived in a rented room in same area of Kapurdhara.

According to police, Kumar was the first man to drown. Chaudhary went down the well in a bid to rescue Kumar after he did not respond to his calls. As both the labourers did not react and come out, Gautam tried his hand to rescue them.

Police informed that they suffered from hypoxia and drowned while cleaning the more than 40-feet deep well. A rescue team led by Deputy Superintendent of Police Gautam KC from Metropolitan Police Circle, Lainchaur, reached the scene after the locals reported the incident.

According to police, Gautam and Kumar died while undergoing treatment at the Green City Hospital in Bausndhara while Chaudary breathed his last at the Dhapasi-based Grande International Hospital. Meanwhile, police have launched further investigation into the incident.

Earlier, the Metropolitan Police Office, Ranipokhari, had appealed to all to adopt essential safety measures to avoid drowning or asphyxiation while digging or cleaning wells.

On an average, seven labourers die every year due to drowning or oxygen deficiency while cleaning or digging wells in Kathmandu valley. Most households in valley dig wells for water.

“Post-mortem reports in the past have attributed oxygen deficiency and other toxic underground gases for deaths of persons climbing down the wells. Therefore, we appeal to all to adopt safety measures before climbing down the well,” read a press release issued by the MPO.