India wrestler dies of electrocution in flooded stadium

Vishal Kumar Verma, a national-level wrestler for India, was electrocuted by a short circuit in a flooded stadium building Tuesday. He was 22.

Vishal was found lying unconscious inside the nearly 40-year-old Jaipal Singh Stadium, just outside the Jharkhand State Wrestling Association office. He was rushed to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.

"Preliminary investigation has revealed that death was due to electrocution," a local police officer told ""Vishal was using a water pump to clear out the water when the incident took place. Faulty wiring seems to be main cause for this incident."

Jharkhand Wrestling Association president Bhola Singh weighed in with his assessment of the incident.

"It is extremely unfortunate. I don't know why he went to the office which is sunk in deep waters," Singh said. "The situation of the stadium is pathetic and the building is in ruins."

The wrestling association has promised to pay Vishal's family 10,000 rupees per month (approximately $156/month), as he was the only breadwinner for his family. However, they laid blame on the governmental agency which runs the facility.

"The RMC (Ranchi Municipal Corp.) has been claiming renovation of the stadium for years, but changes are far from visible. The ground floor is almost always flooded in monsoon," Singh told The Telegraph.

An unidentified official told the same newspaper, "The building has been labelled risky (by RMC), but players still live there and offices function. Sustained negligence has cost a life."

Singh noted that Vishal had represented the state at various championships since 2005, having come fourth in senior nationals this year. The 5'8" wrestler competed at 70 kilograms/154 pounds.


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