At least 11 decomposed bodies and four human skulls were recovered from the Narwana branch of Bhakra Canal in Haryana’s Jind district during the ongoing dredging activity.
The police said they have so far been able to identify only one of the dead bodies as Karamjeet of Punjab’s Patiala district, whose missing complaint was registered in Patiala. His body has been handed over to a team of Punjab Police on Sunday morning.
Jind superintendent of police (SP) Shashank Anand said they have been conducting the DNA tests of the bodies to ascertain their identities. “Since Narwana is the border town, bodies are several times recovered from the canal here whenever the water flow is shut for dredging.The water flow was stopped for annual maintenance, due to which the water levels here receded and the bodies were spotted. These bodies haven’t been recovered in one day, but during last one week,” SP Anand said.
He said most of the bodies, most likely coming from Punjab, are in very bad condition, hinting they could be several months old.
As the news spread, the families of those missing have been thronging Narwana from Punjab in order to identify the bodies.
According to the irrigation department, this is the 25-km long Barwala link of the canal, which enters Haryana from Khanauri in Punjab and goes on to Dhakla Head in Haryana’s Jind. The depth of the link stays around 18-ft throughout, and incidents of people drowning in the canal while taking bath are reported several times.