LAHORE-A five-year-old boy Friday was recovered dead from an uncovered gutter in Iqbal Town two months after he went missing, police and rescue workers said. The body was moved to the morgue for autopsy.

A rescue official said that some passersby spotted the body stuck inside an open manhole and alerted the rescue workers on early Friday. Rescue workers pulled out the body and shifted it to hospital. Dozens of locals gathered on the spot as rescue workers launched the operation.

The boy was identified as Azaan, son of Nadeem, a resident of Badar Block. Two months ago, the police registered a kidnapping case against unidentified men on the complaint of the victim’s father and launched the investigation but to no avail.

According to his father, Azaan was playing in the street when he disappeared under mysterious circumstances. Nadeem told the police that his son was abducted by unknown persons.

A duty officer at the Iqbal Town police station said the postmortem of the deceased would help establish the cause of death.  Further investigation was underway.

Following the tragedy, a large number of residents staged a strong protest demonstration against the city district government stating that the tragedy took place because of the sheer negligence on part of the local administration.

They also chanted slogans against the provincial government for not paying heed to poor sanitary conditions in the provincial metropolis. The protesters said that the authorities were informed about the manholes on several occasions but they did not take action to improve the sanitary system.

Deaths of children after falling in open manholes are not a rare incident in the provincial metropolis because of poor sanitation system particularly in the low-income neighbourhood and suburbs of Lahore

In August 2017, a three year old boy died in a similar incident in Nishat Colony. The child was walking along with his mother when fell into an open manhole due to darkness in the street.