The great-grandmother of three-year-old Maria Sophia Khan, who drowned in a play pool at her Gasparillo home on Monday, has made a passionate plea to mothers to pay attention to their children at all times.
On Monday, the girl was found by her mother Mary Mahabir in the pool, which was in the yard of their home at Maharaj Trace.
A police report stated that sometime after 2 pm, the mother left the child in their apartment to use the washroom, which is situated in the yard. When she returned three to five minutes later, she saw her daughter submerged in the pool.
There was about a foot and a half of water in the pool.
The mother lifted the child out of the water. The child was vomiting and water was also coming out of her nose, the report stated.
An ambulance took Maria to the hospital but doctors could not save her life.
The mother and daughter lived downstairs the home of Maria’s great grandmother Karen Mahabir.
When Guardian Media visited yesterday, Karen said Maria’s mother returned on Monday night with the police to collect her clothes but she was unaware of her whereabouts since then.
Wiping away her tears, Karen recalled that she was upstairs and had no idea what had taken place until the ambulance arrived. She recalled seeing the child lying unconscious on a mat at the entrance of the downstairs apartment.
Questioning how Maria could have drowned in about seven inches of water, she had a message for mothers.
“The only advice I could give is that mothers suppose to pay a hundred per cent attention to their children. I mind eight of them. I had a big pool in the yard, why none of them eh drown? Because if I not in the pool or not near it, I not letting them go in there. Look at that little bit of water in that pool, you telling me that child drown in that pool?” she lamented. Recalling that Maria and her mother moved in with her last year, she said she was very close to the child.
“She did not deserve to die so,” she sobbed.
Karen said Maria’s father, Roger Khan, was murdered almost three years ago in Rio Claro.
An autopsy is expected to be done at the Forensic Science Centre, Port-of-Spain today.
While Maria’s mother was questioned by the police and a statement recorded, she is not in police custody, Guardian Media learned.
Gasparillo police are continuing investigations.