Two die while cleaning sewer at Sant Rampal’s ashram in west Delhi
Police said a third volunteer was injured when he attempted to pull the duo out of the sewer tank.delhi Updated: Sep 19, 2017 00:12 IST
Two devotees of jailed godman Sant Rampal were killed on Monday while cleaning a sewer at his ashram located in Mundka in west Delhi.
The victims were identified as Amarjeet, 30, and Makhan Lal, 27. DCP (outer) Pankaj Singh said the deceased had no connection with any of the civic agencies of the city.
The incident took place around 5pm on Monday and the police claimed that the men had asphyxiated to death after inhaling some toxic gases.
Police said a third volunteer was injured when he attempted to pull the duo out of the sewer tank. He too fell unconscious after being exposed to toxic gases inside the sewer but climbed out on time.
One of the victims, Makhan Lal, belonged from Nepal but was living and working at the ashram for the last 15 years. Amarjeet lived in a nearby village.
A case of death and injury due to negligence was registered at Mundka police station in connection with the incident. The manager of the ashram and other volunteers were being questioned in the matter.
Police officers said they were questioning the manager and residents of the ashram to know why they did not hire sanitation workers for cleaning the sewer and instead depended on volunteers.
A senior police officer said the incident came to their notice after a call was made to the police control room. A police team rushed to the incident spot and learnt that Lal had first entered the sewer tank to clean it. When he did not come out despite other volunteers repeatedly calling out his name, the manager allegedly asked Amarjeet to go down and check.
A few minutes later, another devotee who was keeping a watch on the two, went inside after Amarjeet too stopped responding to them. The man climbed down but as he started feeling uncomfortable he climbed out and fell unconscious.
A rescue team from the fire department later reached the spot and the bodies of the two cleaners were pulled out of the sewer tank. They were rushed to a nearby hospital where doctors pronounced them brought dead, the officer added.
Police said legal action is also likely to be taken against the ashram.