KOTTAYAM: A youth and a migrant labourer, who stepped into a well to repair a motor pump, died of suffocation in Changanassery on Tuesday. The deceased are Joby Mathew aka Kunjucherukkan, 38, of Moolamuri house, Thengana, and Vijay Oron, 29, a native of Banarhat in Jalpaiguri district of West Bengal.
Two officers of the Fire and Rescue Service from Changanassery, who were part of the rescue operation, also experienced breathing problems and uneasiness and sought medical assistance. According to the police, the workers died of asphyxiation. The incident took place around noon in the well of Hotel Pius, near the old private bus stand in Changanassery town.
The police said Joby first stepped into the well to repair the water pump. Seeing Joby falling into the water following breathing trouble, Vijay, who was waiting outside, also entered the well to rescue the former.
When they did not come out, the hotel staff called the Fire Force. Though the Fire Force team pulled out the duo from the well and rushed them to the Changanassery General Hospital, their lives could not be saved. F T Shibu, the driver of the Fire Force unit who collapsed after rescue operation, and fireman Noble, who felt uneasiness, were also rushed to hospital.
The bodies will be handed over to relatives after post-mortem at Govt Medical College Hospital, Kottayam, on Wednesday. The Changanassery police have registered cases for unnatural deaths. Based on an investigation, a decision to book the hotel owner for negligence will also be made. Presence of CO2 at the bottom and inner layers of the well was the reason.