In the latest migrant tragedy with hundreds trying to cross over into the United States, a six-year-old Indian national died of heatstroke in Arizona. The mother had left Gurupreet Kaur, who was to celebrate her seventh birthday, with other migrants while she went to look for water.
US Border Patrol officials described the child’s death as the second recorded fatality of a migrant child this year in Arizona’s southern deserts. The officials highlighted the danger of summer heat in Arizona where temperatures reached a high of 42 degrees Celsius.
Media reports said the girl child and her mother were among a group of five Indian nationals dropped off by smugglers in a remote border area on Tuesday at 10am, about 27 kilometers west of Lukeville, a US border-town about 80 kilometers southwest of Tucson. The mother had gone off with another woman to look for water. They were found wandering in the desert by patrol agents. A US Border Patrol Agent Jesus Vasavilbaso said the mother did not speak English and used sign language to inform them that she had left her daughter behind. The authorities later found the child’s body about one mile from the border. A medical officer revealed that the child had died of hyperthermia.
Immigration officials confirmed that an increasing number of Indian nationals are crossing into the US from Mexico. In April this year, two Indian nationals were apprehended by Border Patrol Agents at the US – Mexico border in Arizona. US officials said Indian nationals are among thousands of Africans and Asian migrants who fly to third countries and then embark on an arduous trek through Mexico and into the US southern deserts led by smuggling cartels.