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  • Mother of boy who drowned in 2005 will help Harekrishna’s kin

Mumbai, Jul 31: Renu Khanolkar, the mother of nine-year-old Pratik who died in a swimming accident in the pool of a Bhayander-based school in July 2005, had come forward to support the family of seven-year-old Harekrishna Singh who died in a similar fashion at a school swimming pool in Versova last Tuesday. Meanwhile, school authorities claim they will not conduct swimming sessions till investigations into the case are over.

Pratik’s mother Renu said, “What happened to Harekrishna was similar to what had happened to my child. That’s why I wanted to support Harekrishna’s family in their fight against the negligent school management.” Pratik died on July 16, 2005, in the swimming pool of Ram Ratan Vidya Mandir in Mira-Bhayander. Police had registered a complaint against the principal and swimming instructor.

Renu alleged that the management of Janakidevi Educational Trust (JET) was late in informing Harekrishna’s mother, Sarita Singh about the incident. “Sarita told me that when she reached the school, her son was alive. She gave him mouth-to-mouth respiration, after which he vomited. But the school authorities did not bother to provide any medical aid to the child,” said Renu.

Meanwhile, Harekrishna’s family is unhappy with the “slow approach” taken by the police. “Apart from the two swimming instructors, the police should have booked the school management, but did not. The police are not giving us details of the post-mortem report,” said Harekrishna’s cousin, Rohit.

He said the school management should be responsible for the safety of students. “The incident occurred due to negligence of the school management. We will consult with our lawyer and will initiate legal action against them,” he said.

JET trustee and NCP leader, Narendra Verma said, “We have not received any complaint regarding swimming sessions. We are waiting for police investigations to be completed so we know what happened.”


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