An 11-year-old boy drowned in a tank in West Tambaram on Sunday while attempting to collect ornamental fishes. His body was recovered only on Monday when it appeared on the surface of the water even as his parents relatives and neighbours were frantically searching for him.

Tambaram police said E. Vignesh was son of Elumalai, a conservancy worker of the Tambaram Municipality. The family lives in Sivanandan Street. Vignesh, a student of class VI at Baby High School, had gone along with his younger brother Karthik to the ‘pazhaya Tambaram kulam’ on Mudichur Road, which is near his home in the morning. They collected a few ornamental fishes and returned. 

He went back to the tank again after lunch and did not return. His parents began searching for him all over West Tambaram. As they were unable to trace him even after midnight on Sunday, they informed Tambaram police station.

Early on Monday morning, residents living in the vicinity of the tank, noticed a body floating. A police team visited the spot and retrieved the body, which turned out to be of Vignesh. His body was handed over to his relatives after post-mortem examination at Tambaram Taluk Government Hospital in Chromepet.

The tank, an important landmark in Tambaram, got a facelift some years ago. Incidents of people committing suicide by jumping into the tank had come down after the creation of a walkers’ pathway and a fence.  

The tank is beside the Selliamman Temple and ornamental fishes have been let into the water as part of sprucing it up. Children often flock to the tank and climb down the steps, standing very close to the water. Many boys try to catch small fishes using nets and take them home. Police suspect Vignesh to have fallen into the tank between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. Though the water level had dipped now, it still was deep in some spots, police added.

More In: Chennai