Four-year-old V. Thanes Nair allegedly drowned in an adult swimming pool on his first day of kindergarten.
The parents of four-year-old V. Thanes Nair are seeking justice for their son who drowned in a swimming pool in April.
D. Nilaveni and her husband, V. Vijay, walked barefoot from a kindergarten in Bandar Sri Klebang, Perak to the Ipoh police headquarters while carrying placards calling for “Justice for Thanes.”
Nilaveni called upon the Perak chief of police to conduct a detailed investigation to uncover the truth on the day her son died and to submit evidence of the kindergarten’s negligence.
Thanes is Nilaveni and Vijay’s only child.
What happened in April?
On 17 April, V. Thanes Nair attended kindergarten for the first time. Nilaveni dropped off her son at school at 9am.
She received a call at about 10.45am from the teacher stating that her son had a fall and was told to head over to the Chemor Health Clinic.
When she reached the clinic, she found that her son was in critical condition and wasn’t responding.
It was only then she was told her son fell into the swimming pool. The doctor told Nilaveni that her son had been in the water for too long and had to be sent to the hospital.
Thanes was sent to the Raja Permaisuri Bainun Hospital (HRBP) and had brain surgery the next day (18 April). Sadly, he never gained consciousness.
Nilaveni and the kindergarten principal lodged a police report respectively on 18 April.
On 23 April, Thanes breathed his last at about 10.35am, six days after the incident. The cause of death was brain death due to suffocation and organ failure.
The case is classified under Section 31(1)(a) of the Children Act 2001.
Mum claims kindergarten was negligent
Nilaveni said the kindergarten was negligent and wants justice to be served. She believed the kindergarten staff failed to monitor her son’s movements and that led him to fall into the swimming pool, which resulted in his death.
According to Ipoh Police Chief, ACP Yahaya Hassan, Thanes is believed to have drowned after falling into the swimming pool of a nursery in Bandar Baru Sri Klebang, Chemor.
The kindergarten management said in a statement that the victim was attending a trial class at school when the tragedy occurred at about 10am.
The victim allegedly disappeared and had been in the adult swimming pool. The teacher asked for help from another instructor to give CPR to the victim before sending him for treatment.
Initial investigations revealed that the victim was an autistic child who was active and liked to climb.
The nursery claimed that Nilaveni did not disclose to the school that her child is autistic. However, the school agreed to allow Nilaveni to place the victim as a probationary student for two hours.
The school promised to work closely with the authorities and provide all existing evidence, including CCTV footage, to the authorities to facilitate investigations.
The school also extended its sincerest apologies to the victim’s family.
Enrolled in kindergarten to socialise
According to Sinar Daily, Nilaveni claimed the school management distorted the matter by saying they didn’t know her son was autistic.
Nilaveni said her son was diagnosed by the doctor for having mild autism and speech delay.
The doctor recommended an early intervention programme for three months and suggested enrolling Thanes in a kindergarten to socialise.
Nilaveni said the kindergarten has yet to give an actual reason why her son was found unconscious in the adult swimming pool on 17 April.
I am very disappointed because my son was not immediately sent by ambulance for treatment and the kindergarten failed to monitor and take care of my son, who was only 4 years old, when he was in their premises. How did my son, who was supposed to be under supervision, get to the swimming pool area?D. Nilaveni, V. Thanes Nair’s mother