Teenager drowns in Narayani river after falling from ‘selfie rock’Seventeen-year-old Manish Sah, originally hailing from the Indian state of Bihar, went missing after he fell into the Narayani river in Narayangadh, Chitwan, on Saturday.
Seventeen-year-old Manish Sah, originally hailing from the Indian state of Bihar, went missing after he fell into the Narayani river in Narayangadh, Chitwan, on Saturday. On Sunday, divers from the Armed Police Force (APF) Disaster Management Training Centre in Kurintar retrieved his body from the river. The incident took place as the boy, who came to visit his father in Narayangadh, accidentally fell into the river from a protruding rock on the river bank.
The rock is known as the ‘selfie rock’ among the locals as a large number of visitors throng the place to take ‘selfies’.
On February 2016, two teenage girls had slipped into the river while atop the rock. Security personnel and locals safely rescued one while the other drowned. The incident site is about 500 metres upstream from a bridge linking Narayangadh and Gaidakot of Nawalparasi district.
As per the locals, the ‘selfie rock’ and several other similar boulders on the river bank are death traps. An APF diver who fished out Sah’s body on Sunday told the Post that the part of the river surrounding the rock is deep and dangerous.
“The river is about 20 to 22 feet deep in and around the area where the rock is situated. Chances of survival is minimal if one slips and falls into the water,” said Shir Bahadur Thapa, an APF diver.
According to him, the river bed in the area is a quagmire of mulch with no hard landing to find one’s feet.
Asides from the locals who go to the river bank to do laundry and dishes, visitors often frequent the area for entertainment. Statues of Lord Buddha and elephants are installed in the green meadows on the river bank as the area is being developed into a park for visitors. However, there are hardly any warning signs to tell of the dangers of stepping into the water.
“The area is quite dangerous but visitors aren’t aware of it. In the past, some warning boards were put up and security guards posted in the area, but not anymore. We will talk to the authorities soon and ask them to take necessary measures to avoid such mishaps in the future,” said Ram Prasad Gautam, inspector at the Ward Police Office in Narayangadh.