Rescuers have located and identified the body of renowned gastroenterologist Deepak Amarapurkar, who went missing on Tuesday evening after falling into an open manhole during the Mumbai deluge, officials said on Thursday.
Untraceable since he left for home in his car from Bombay Hospital, Amarapurkar had accidentally fallen into the manhole on a flooded road barely a kilometer from his residence in Prabhadevi.
After the flood waters receded on Wednesday, BMC workers launched a massive search for him inside the manhole and connecting drains but could not locate him.
Much later, his body washed off the Worli seashore and he was identified by his imported wrist-watch. An umbrella was stuck on the manhole cover, officials said.
Amarapurkar, 58, was a senior gastroenterologist working with Bombay Hospital and is survived by his wife and two children.
Late on Tuesday, witnesses said they had seen him walking on the flooded roads after his car stalled and suddenly falling into the open manhole near Senapati Bapat Marg.
The residents had reportedly shifted the lid to allow the flood waters flow into the drains and marked the location with some bamboo rods but this failed to prevent the tragedy.
Just before he disappeared into the manhole, he had called his wife Anjali Amarapurkar, a pathologist, saying he would reach home in five to 10 minutes.
His colleagues and the medical fraternity had flooded social media groups with messages and photos seeking information about his whereabouts since Tuesday when Mumbai notched over 330 mm rainfall – the highest since the great Mumbai floods of July 2005.
Since Thursday morning, the social media was flooded with messages of condolence for Amarapurkar.
Film actress Genelia D’Souza-Deshmukh tweeted: “The city where you saved a zillion lives including my father’s (TCS official Neil D’Souza) has failed you. I am so sorry as a Mumbaikar. Deeply saddened.”
Assistant Commissioner of Police Worli, S. Deshmukh said the body has been sent for autopsy and will be handed over to the family later for last rites.