Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he has spoken to Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami for the rescue of a two-year-old boy who has been stuck in a borewell in Tiruchirappalli for over 72 hours now. The Prime Minister, in a tweet, said "every effort" is being made to ensure Sujith's safety.
"My prayers are with the young and brave Sujith Wilson. Spoke to Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami regarding the rescue efforts underway to save Sujith. Every effort is being made to ensure that he is safe," PM Modi tweeted.
Rescuing the boy may take another 12 hours, a senior government official said earlier today, adding the child is in a stable condition. The rescue team is drilling a one-meter-wide tunnel parallel to the borewell to reach the boy but the progress is slow due to the rocky terrain, he said. After drilling, the fire service personnel will try to reach the child via a horizontal passage.
Sujith Wilson fell into the borewell while he was playing near his house at 5:30 pm on Friday. There are conflicting reports about the depth of the hole - some say it is 600 feet deep, while others say it is at least 1,000 feet.
Sujith has been in the borewell without food and water. Oxygen is being supplied but he has stopped responding to calls.
A team of 25 personnel, including those from the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), are working to rescue the child.
Many are critical of the state government's "trial and error" approach, saying the NDRF was summoned nine hours after the rescue operation began.
Tamil Nadu Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam has denied the charge. "We have deployed an advanced rig which can drill five feet in an hour. Rescue work had begun an hour after information was received," he said.