Seven girls, aged between 10 to 18, drown in a check dam in Tamil Nadu

The deceased, who had gone into the water to bathe, were reportedly caught in an undercurrent at the deep end and drowned.
Image of a person swimming at the Geddilam river check dam in Cuddalore
Image of a person swimming at the Geddilam river check dam in Cuddalore
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In a tragic incident, seven girls — all aged 18 years and below — died after they tried to take a swim at the check dam near Tamil Nadu’s Cuddalore. The incident occured when the group, who were all neighbours and friends, went into the water at the check dam across Geddilam river to bathe on Sunday afternoon, June 5.

According to the police, the girls were washed away by a strong undercurrent in the deep end of the dam, and they drowned. The deceased have been identified as A Monisha (16), M Navaneetha (18), K Priya (18), S Sangavi (16), R Divya Darshini (10), her sister R Priyadarshini (16), and M Kummudha (18). They all hailed from A Kuchipalyam village near Nellikuppam in the Cuddalore district of Tamil Nadu.

The dam has been built on the Geddilam river that flows near the village of Kuchipalayam, located near Nellikuppam in Cuddalore district. The water in the dam was stagnant and many people visited the dam to bathe in the river as temperatures soared on Sunday. However, two of the victims began to wade into the deep end, when they started to drown. The others who were with them went in after them, in an effort to save them, but began drowning as well.

The police said that the Fire and Rescue personnel at Cuddalore rushed to the spot and tried to save the girls, but could not. They retrieved their bodies later, which were later sent to the Cuddalore district hospital for postmortem.

Tamil Nadu Minister of Agriculture MRK Panneerselvam has condoled the deaths and has asked local residents not to risk their lives by bathing in water bodies and dangerous areas.

Chief Minister MK Stalin has also condoled the death of the seven girls, and has announced an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh to each of their families from the Chief Minister’s Public Relief Fund.

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