His proposal was accepted by all clever swimmers. They went up the bridge and began to leap one by one. This they did several times. Ashok went up once more and took his last leap.
Somehow he went down. He did not rise from the bottom of the canal. For some time we watched thinking that he was taking a long dip.
We waited but he did not rise. We became frightened. There was no question of saving him. We stopped bathing and put on our clothes. The news had spread like a wild fire in the school.
It was growing dark. Some of the teachers came and asked the whole story. We had not much to say. Lanterns were sent far. A search was made for his body.
We went a long way down the current, examined very yard of the banks. This search continued for about two hours in the night.
In the morning, the father of Ashok had come and joined us in the search weeping and waiting but alas the body could not be found anywhere.
At last we reached another barrier bridge. When we did not find the dead body there also, we all returned home sad and disappointed.
There was much sorrow. Many men came to know the true story. Next morning at about 9 it was reported that the dead body had been found at another bridge at a distance of 3 kilometers.
It was brought to Hostel in a rickshaw. It was a piteous sight. The body had been swollen up. The face was hurt and had become pale. We could hardly recognize him.
The police came and made enquiries. In the mean while the members of Ashok’s family came and police delivered the body to them for the funeral ceremonies.
It was a great tragedy. Though there were still four days for the school to close, we stopped going to canal. My father came to see me and gave me a warning.