External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said today that the Indian Mission in Italy have been alerted to extend all help in the case of four Sikh men from Punjab who died after drowning in a slurry tank at a dairy farm near the northern Italian town of Pavia.
"We have alerted our Embassy @IndiainItaly to extend all help," the External Affairs Minister wrote on Twitter while retweeting a post of Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on the same issue.
"Saddened to hear about the death of 4 Punjabi men drown in a farm manure tank near Pavia, Italy. Request @DrSJaishankar to instruct the Indian Mission in Italy to help get the mortal remains back to India," Amarinder Singh had tweeted on Friday.
According to British media reports, investigators suspect that the four were choked to death by carbon dioxide fumes from cow manure. They believe that three died after jumping in the tank to rescue a worker who had been emptying it.
The four were identified as 48-year-old Prem Singh, 45-year-old Tarsem Singh, 29-year-old Arminder Singh and 28-year-old Majinder Singh. While brothers Prem and Tarsem Singh owned the farm, the other two were employees.
Prem Singh and Tarsem Singh had registered their farm in 2017.
The victims' wives raised the alarm when the men failed to turn up for lunch on Thursday. They went to the scene and spotted one body in the sewage. The wives then called in firefighters who donned masks and emptied the tank to recover all the bodies.
Pavia is located about 45 kilometres from Milan.
Meanwhile, the Italian media reported that the farm at Arena Po, producing milk and veal cattle, is one of the biggest in the Pavia region.