Ashish Dahiya drowned while rescuing a woman colleague who had accidentally fallen into the pool.
New Delhi: A 30-year-old rookie IAS officer drowned allegedly while rescuing a woman colleague who had accidentally fallen into a swimming pool at the Foreign Service Institute in Ber Sarai here on Tuesday.
The deceased, Ashish Dahiya, was a Jammu and Kashmir cadre officer and had won the Director's Gold Medal during his IAS training around a fortnight back.
He was attending a poolside party with his friends, which they had planned before he joined as an assistant collector in Srinagar from June 1, when the incident happened, according to police.
Ashish's family, however, said that he was a good swimmer and raised doubts over the claim that he had died due to drowning. Ishwar Singh, Deputy Commissioner of Police (South), said, "Prima facie, the team that carried out the post-mortem has said that the death was due to drowning and there were no injuries on the body."
Police was informed about the drowning at the institute in south Delhi around midnight after which he was rushed to Fortis Hospital where he was declared brought dead.
According to police, Ashish was attending a poolside party with friends from the Indian foreign and revenue services. During the party, they decided to go for a swim in the pool located at the club. Police suspect they had consumed alcohol.
A woman officer accidentally fell into the pool and the other officers, including Ashish, jumped in to rescue her, police said quoting eyewitnesses.
As the woman was safely pulled out, it was noticed that Ashish was missing. Later, he was found unconscious floating in the pool. He was taken to a hospital where efforts were made in vain to resuscitate him Ashish's family demanded a thorough probe in the matter.
His uncle Kuldeep said that he was an ace swimmer and had crossed a five-kilometre stretch across Bhakra Nangal dam. While he was posted as a Deputy Superintendent of Police in Himachal Pradesh, he had even won a gold medal in swimming, Kudeep said.
He said that Ashish wanted to be an IAS officer and serve people. He appeared for the UPSC examination and qualified for the Indian Revenue Service. He served in the Customs and Central Excise till last year and then qualified for the IAS.
He had finished his training from Mussoorie recently and was supposed to join duty in Srinagar. Before going their separate paths, Ashish and his friends had planned to have a reunion in Delhi. He was married for three years. His wife Pragya is a doctor and is preparing for UPSC examination.
Police said that a medical board comprising three doctors carried out the post-mortem. The entire procedure was videographed. Police also made the family members talk to the doctors who carried out the autopsy. The doctors told them that the death was caused due to drowning but a final report will affirm the initial findings. The viscera has been preserved in order to ascertain whether he had consumed alcohol.