Patry eating contest victim’s father, colleagues shocked (Lead)

November 20th, 2008 - 8:43 pm ICT by IANS  

Gurgaon, Nov 20 (IANS) The parents and colleagues of a 22-year-old MNC exmployee, who died here during a pastry eating contest, are yet to come to terms with the accident.While his father says that such contests should be avoided, his colleagues - although shocked - cannot say much as their company has barred them from speaking to the media.

Sorab Sabharwal, employed with Nokia Siemens Networks, died during a pastry eating contest at the office canteen Wednesday. He had joined the company in June this year as a solutions engineer.

“Such contests should be avoided. If at all such a contest is to be held, it should be done under strict supervision of medical experts so that our story is not repeated,” Sorab’s father R.K. Sabharwal said here Thursday.

Equally shocked but unable to speak out are Sabharwal’s colleagues at work.

Ankita Mehta (name changed), an employee of the same MNC, said: “All the employees of Nokia Siemens Networks have been strictly instructed not to speak about the incident.”

“We are all shocked at the incident, but still can’t express our feelings until the investigations in the case are over,” she said.

Deepika Bansal, senior accounts manager of the company, added that they were providing all possible help to the police and to Sorab’s family, but until the investigations were on, “the officials or its (the company’s) employees will not take any questions from the media.”

Underlining that they did all they could to save Sorab’s life, the company said in a statement: “Yesterday, we lost our colleague Sorab Sabharwal, a valued member of Nokia Siemens Networks Centralised Solution Support Center (CSSC) team.”

“Immediately after Sorab had taken ill, senior managers from his team accompanied him to the Max Hospital, Gurgaon, where, despite the best efforts of medical staff, he was pronounced dead. The company remains in constant contact with Sorab’s family and is extending all possible support to them.”

The police said that any decision regarding action against the company would be taken only after it received the post-mortem examination report.

S.S. Dalal, chief medical officer of the Civil Hospital, said: “It seems to be a case of chocking of the windpipe. Sorab probably ate a huge chunk of pastry during the contest. We have forwarded the viscera samples to the forensic lab in Madhuban to establish if he had consumed any toxic or poisonous substance.”

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