A 16-year-old girl Aparna Ramabhadra died among the four girls who were battling for lives after consuming a poisonous fruit as an attempt to commit suicide at the water sports facility run by the Sports Authority of India (SAI) in Kerala. Police said all four were undergoing training at the SAI Water Sports Centre in Alappuzha, and were hospitalised on Wednesday night but unfortunately Aparna died on Thursday. A relative of Aparna alleged that the athletes committed suicide after they were tortured by their coaches, but the charge was denied by SAI and police.

Alappuzha police have confirmed that they have recovered a note signed by the four which says they were committing suicide after being scolded by their seniors for a silly fault. The police also promised to take action against the people who were found guilty.

Indian Sports Minister Mr. Sarbananda Sonowal termed the death of the athlete as a big loss to the country. In a statement from New Delhi, he said: I am deeply aggrieved by the incident. The young girl who has died was a very promising sportsperson. It is a big loss to the country, in general, and the SAI and the sports fraternity in particular. I convey my condolences to the bereaved family. We will give all possible help to the bereaved family. At this stage, I would only like to say that if anyone from the SAI is found guilty in connection with this incident, the strictest possible action will be taken against him or her.

AI Director-General Injeti Srinivas termed it as a tragic incident as he said we have 257 centres and more than 10,000 trainees, but such an incident has never happened. He said since investigating agencies were examining the evidence, he would only be on a fact-finding mission. “It is an abnormal situation. Since it is a training centre, they don’t have any pressure of performance. It is very intriguing why the trainees took the extreme step.

(Image credits: PTI)



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