CHENNAI: A day after an artillery fuse igniter exploded in Manampathy village at Kancheepuram killing 21-year-old Surya, 25-year-old A Dileep Raghav, whose birthday the men had gathered to celebrate, succumbed to his injuries on Monday morning.
Dileep was an air conditioner mechanic in Chennai and would visit home once a week. Last week, his mother Muniammal said, he quit his job to help his parents in farming. “We are not so close to any of our relatives. For Dileep, it was his friends with whom he was very close,” she said.
He had completed his B.Sc. in Electronics and Communication from a private college in Kancheepuram. “He was turning 25 on Sunday. We were excited because we were going to meet after two years.
Dileep was one who arranged for all the friends to come to the wedding. Since his birthday fell on the same day, we had planned a surprise. We had planned to meet at Tambaram at around 5 pm. Dileep was late and left home by 4 pm when his friends from his neighbourhood called him to cut a cake,” said Dileep’s friend M Selva.
Surya, a student in Vellore, had travelled from Koovathur for the neighbourhood birthday celebrations. Though he was running late, Dileep agreed to go with his friends to the dry pond near the temple. That is where Dileep, Yuvaraj (22), Thirumal (24), Jayaram (26) and Surya found the artillery fuse igniter. A while later, the residents heard a loud noise and found the men lying in a pool of blood. They informed the police and ambulance.
Surya died on the way to the hospital. Doctors at the Chengalpattu government hospital declared Dileep dead at 3.30am on Monday. “On Sunday night, Dileep briefly regained consciousness and asked for water. Later he cried saying that it was he who had asked Surya to throw the device away as it could be dangerous. He did not know that it would explode,” said his friend Mani, who had been with him at the hospital.
According to his friends, his only aim was to make his parents happy and get his elder sister married off at his own expense. “Had he left home on time he would have missed meeting his friends near his house and would have been alive now,” said Catherine, his classmate.