The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Mother falls, child drops 100 ft to muddy death

A two-year-old girl fell into the Adi Ganga and died in its muddy waters on Sunday evening, after her mother tripped on the pavement on Kidderpore Bridge.

A two-hour search for the baby till late into the evening ultimately yielded the body. But even before the lifeless body was found, police officers monitoring the search admitted they did not have much hope of retrieving her alive. There were “very slim” chances of her surviving the 100-foot fall. A restive crowd gathered at the site. This, coupled with the busy traffic on the bridge, hampered the search.

Distraught and dishevelled, Mansoora Begum, a resident of Metiabruz, arrived at South Port police station a little after 6 pm to plead with policemen to help her rescue her daughter, Safreen.

“A team went to the bridge immediately and contacted divers, who were pressed into service in a few minutes,” a senior officer said.

Mansoora, according to what she told the police, was crossing the bridge, when she apparently tripped on a stretch of the poorly-maintained pavement. Officials felt she could have lost her balance, as she was dressed in flowing garments. Moreover, construction material is dumped on the pavement.

Her daughter flew out of her arms as she tried to maintain her balance. Mansoora told police that she made a last-ditch attempt to hold on to her daughter but failed as she fell — face first — on the pavement. “I saw Safreen fall into the water (about a hundred feet below) head first,” the mother recounted to South Port police officers.

A few passersby heard Mansoora, who had started wailing as soon as her daughter hit Adi Ganga’s waters, and insisted that she report the matter to the police. Mansoora was returning to her Metiabruz home after meeting her husband, an employee of a Kidderpore restaurant, she told the police.

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