Five months after 34-year-old Ajay Athaval drowned in a flooded nullah during heavy rains, the police handed over his body to his family.

Athaval’s body was found floating ashore the Nhava Sheva beach in September. As the body was beyond recognition, the Uran police conducted a DNA test to identify it.

Athaval went missing during heavy rains on August 29. While he was trying to save two girls, he fell into a flooded nullah in Ramnagar. He had been missing since then. Several attempts were made to search for his body.

Both the Thane Municipal Corporation and the district disaster management cell had conducted extensive search operations at all the nullahs and creeks in Thane.

A police officer from Srinagar police station said, “On September 11, a body was found by the Uran police along the Nhava Sheva beach near Uran, 50 km from Thane. They contacted the Thane police. The body was decomposed and beyond recognition. A family from Panvel too had claimed that the body belonged to their son who had gone missing on the same time.”

The police decided to conduct a DNA test. Athaval’s mother’s DNA was matched with the body.

Sulbha Patil, senior police inspector from Srinagar, said, “The Uran police conducted the DNA test and intimated us that the DNA of the body matches with the mother. They have handed over the body to the family who conducted the last rites in Ramnagar on Friday evening.”