24-year-old Harshid had gotten trapped inside the tunnel well when there was a mudslide on Monday.

Man trapped in Kerala water tunnel for over 5 hours passes away
news Death Tuesday, June 23, 2020 - 11:25

The youth who got trapped inside a tunnel well in Puthige in Kasargod on Monday has passed away.

Kumbla Sub-Inspector of Police Santhosh confirmed that 24-year-old Harshid was found dead by the time the rescue personnel could reach him inside the blocked tunnel. He had got trapped inside the tunnel well, known as suranga, when there was a mudslide in the region a little after 11 am on Monday. The police and the fire force had reached the spot and began their rescue operations but by 5 pm, when they could finally clear the mud and reach Harshid, he had been found dead.

Harshid was a resident of Kattukuke. He went to the suranga, which was on land owned by his relative, with two other men to clear some mud when the landslide occurred. The two men with Harshid had not gone too deep into the tunnel and were rescued by fire and police officials. But Harshid had gone further deep and though the officials were able to see him inside, he could not be reached on time.

Bulldozers were used to clear the mud that had fallen and blocked the way, while a few officials also tried to remove it manually for hours.

Surangas are used to bring out the water from hill tops through tunnels. Many farmers in Kasaragod depend on these water sources when there is extreme drought in the district. These tunnels are however prone to landslides and mudslides, and if one is trapped inside, the oxygen supply inside would be less.

One and a half years ago, Narayana Naik, another man from the region – Badiadka, also in Puthige panchayat – had gone into a suranga to catch a porcupine and died similarly when mud fell into the tunnel and blocked the way out.

Also read: Understaffed and facing threats to life, Kerala’s Forest Dept officials speak out

Show us some love! Support our journalism by becoming a TNM Member - Click here.