In a tragic end to the nearly 50-hour-long rescue operation, a four-year-old girl who fell into an open borewell at Nagathana village, near Bijapur, was found dead late on Thursday.
The round-the-clock operation launched on Tuesday evening ended with the rescue teams finding the body of Akshata Hanumanth Patil at a depth of about 26 feet in the abandoned borewell, officials said.
The body had almost started decomposing, district health officer Gundappa told reporters, shortly after the rescue team pulled her out from the nearly 300 feet borewell in a farm.
Akshata was stuck at about 25 or 26 feet, additional deputy commissioner Kavitha said.
Rescuers dug a parallel well and drilled a horizontal tunnel to reach the girl, who met with the tragedy while she was following her father, a labourer in the farm. Iron shafts were inserted under the spot where Akshata was stuck to prevent her from sliding down further, officials said.
Kavitha said oxygen was being supplied to the girl constantly while Bijapur district Superintendent of Police Ramnivas Sepat said the rescue operations were launched immediately after the incident was reported.
Teams from National Disaster Response Force, fire brigade and police and Hutti Gold Mines were involved in the operation which at times was delayed when the rescuers encountered rocky portions while digging.
A robot expert from Tamil Nadu, Manikandan made three attempts to reach the girl with his machine since he was brought in a helicopter here yesterday but to no avail.
Her distraught parents Hanumanth Maipatil and Savithri, both agricultural labourers, watched the operation helplessly as villagers in and surrounding areas prayed for their daughter. The body was taken to Bijapur hospital for post mortem, officials said.
Bijapur district in-charge minister MB Patil, who along with senior officials oversaw the operation, said they made all out efforts to save the girl.