CHENNAI: A 27-year-old woman’s attempt to rid her house of ants turned tragic when she used fire against the ants. The woman suffered 90 per cent burns and succumbed in a hospital. Her mother suffered minor injuries.
According to the police, the incident took place on Saturday afternoon when S Sangeetha from Perumal Koil Street in Aminjikarai and her mother decided to set an anthill on fire. Sangeetha was working in an IT company in Sholinganallur and was the breadwinner.
Her father, Sathyamoorthy, a driver, and was out of job since lockdown was imposed. Her mother is a homemaker and brother is a college student.
According to Sathyamoorthy, Sangeetha and his wife took a can of kerosene and placed a paper dipped in kerosene on the anthill.
“Sangeetha was holding the can. When her mother lit the paper, the ants began dispersing in all directions and some climbed on Sangeetha’s legs. When she tried to shake them off, the kerosene from the can spilled over her and she was engulfed in flames,” said a police officer.
Sangeetha’s mother also sustained burn injuries. Sathyamoorthy who was outside the house heard their cries for help and put out the fire with help of the neighbours.
The two were rushed to the Kilpauk Medical College and Hospital, where Sangeetha died in the evening. Her mother was discharged. Aminjikarai police registered a case and an investigation is on.