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Dad?s pressure kills budding talent

A promising 14-year-old table-tennis player dies at his south Kolkata home while practising with his father, report Soudhriti Bhabani and Rajib Chakraborty.

india Updated: Jan 09, 2007 06:07 IST

A promising 14-year-old table-tennis player died on Monday at his south Kolkata home while practising with his father. The mother and sister of the boy, a national sub-junior player, blamed the father. They said he had forced the boy to practise from early morning till well after noon — when the boy collapsed.

The police have detained the father, but said the cause of death would be known only after a postmortem examination.

The family and neighbours of Dipak Bhattacharjee alleged he beat and tortured his son Biswadip whenever the boy lost a match. “This morning my brother returned home around 6 a.m. after exercising at the Rifle Club playground,” Biswadip’s younger sister Neha said. “After breakfast, my father asked him to start practising. He and I practised for three hours from 7.30 am. When we stopped, my father asked Biswadip to continue,” said Neha.

She said Dipak hit Biswadip with a small plastic object whenever he missed a shot. Around 12.30 pm, Biswadip collapsed. He was declared dead at MR Bangur Hospital. Biswadip’s mother Papiya too blamed Dipak for the death.

Biswadip’s former coach Tapan Chandra narrated an instance when Dipak beat his son with an iron chain. “I took the boy to hospital for an MRI scan. He had a serious head injury,” said Chandra.

First Published: Jan 09, 2007 06:07 IST