Newspaper article The Canadian Press

UofT Student Who Died Was Found under Floating Dock at Camp: Classmate

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

UofT Student Who Died Was Found under Floating Dock at Camp: Classmate

Article excerpt

Student who died was found under floating dock:classmate


An 18-year old University of Toronto student who died during a trip to the school's engineering camp this week was found under a floating dock not long after he and his classmates jumped into a lake on a hot afternoon, said a young man who pulled his colleague from the water.

Second-year civil engineering student Anand Baiju, who according to his family didn't know how to swim, died in an apparent drowning while at the facility on Gull Lake near Minden, Ont., on Tuesday.

His classmate, Sina Lakbala, said he met Baiju on the bus ride to the camp earlier that day and had spent the drive discussing the new school year and a campus engineering club Baiju had joined.

"He was really passionate about this club and engineering," said Lakbala. "He was a really fun guy."

There was no air conditioning on the bus over the course of the drive so when the class arrived at the camp, a group of students immediately decided to cool off in the lake, Lakbala said, noting that he and Baiju were among them.

About 20 minutes later, while in the water, Lakbala said he noticed some students frantically searching the water around a floating dock some distance from the shore.

Lakbala said he swam over and learned Baiju may have gone under, so he began diving under the surface to see if he could find his classmate.

"I was under the water trying to feel around, and then I felt something -- like a hand," he said. "I tried to grab his hand, and then I pulled him out of the water and started pulling him to the beach."

Others then helped Lakbala get Baiju, who was unconscious, to the shore, he said. Students then began performing CPR on the young man while a professor called 911.

"I just sat on the beach in shock," Lakbala said. "I couldn't feel my legs. I was shaking. …

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