CHENNAI: A 38-year-old man drowned in a Corporation swimming pool at Marina beach on Tuesday.
Police said S Habibullah had made his two children – aged 9 and 6 – sit on the sides of the pool and he was in the water when he suddenly collapsed and fell into it around 7 am. He is said to have not cried out for help. None noticed him drowning.
“Only after the children started crying by pointing to their father, others pulled him out,” said a police officer of Anna Square Police Station, which is investigating the case. Curiously, according to police and Corporation officials, the spot where Habibullah drowned was just three-ft-deep.
He was taken to the Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital, but doctors declared him brought dead.
Habibullah, a resident of Mannadi, was working as a manager in an auto spare parts store at Pudupet. He left around 6 am to the pool with his two children Ahmadullah (9) and Abdullah (6).
“He took the kids to the swimming pool occasionally. He knew swimming and it was highly impossible he drowned,” said a family friend waiting at the mortuary.Habibullah’s friends and family suspect that he lost consciousness all of a sudden, which resulted in his death. They wondered whether there were no guards at the swimming pool to monitor people.
“Usually guards will be present around the swimming pool to keep a watch on the people. But, in this case, nobody seems to have been there at the spot raising doubts whether the swimming pool has any staff to ensure safety,” said Ahmed, a relative of Habibullah.
When Express contacted a Corporation officer in charge of Teynampet zone, under which the pool falls, he said, “Since Habibullah was a regular to the swimming pool, the staff did not pay much attention as he knew swimming.”
Soon after the incident, the pool was closed and a board said the pool was closed for maintenance work. When Express tried to speak to staff about the incident, they refused to comment.