Hours after six-year-old Devananda's body was found on Friday in the Ithikkara Lake near her house in Kollam, the inquest report by the police has said that there were no signs of physical assault on the body. The report also says that the child was wearing the clothes in which she has disappeared from her house on Thursday morning.
The postmortem will be conducted at the Thiruvananthapuram Medical College. Devananda went missing on Thursday morning from her house. Her mother Dhanya had said that the child had wanted to accompany her while she was going to wash clothes. However, the mother told the Devananda to stay back in the house, and left for washing the clothes only after seeing the girl enter the house.
Though the inquest report does not raise any doubts, neighbours of the family told various Malayalam channels that they wanted a proper investigation. Many raised doubts because the lake is around 500 metres away from the house, and the child would have had to cross a makeshift bridge or bund to reach the lake.
Moreover, on Thursday, a dog squad and diving squad had extensively searched the same lake and not found any traces of the child. However, some say that there are possibilities that the diving squad may have missed the child as the lake is big in size and the child could even be stuck in the mud.
The child's father works in Muscat and had returned on Friday morning.
On Thursday, as soon as the news came out that the child had gone missing, hundreds of people from the locality and thousands more on social media contributed to her search. A special investigation team under an Assistant Commissioner of Police was formed to find Devananda.
Police officers told TNM that the suspicions raised by local residents were under their consideration, and only a post mortem could reveal the truth.
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan also expressed condolences over the child’s death. Leader of opposition Ramesh Chennithala also expressed condolences, and also demanded a probe into the child’s death.