11-year-old boy who died in canal 'pushed in', mother tells inquest in Sheffield

The mother of an 11-year-old boy who drowned in a canal has told an inquest she believes her son was pushed into the water despite children he was with telling police that he jumped in of his own accord.

Subhaan Ali
Subhaan Ali

Subhaan Ali died in a canal behind Parkgate Retail Park, near his home in Rotherham, South Yorkshire, in July last year, Doncaster Coroner's Court was told.

Subhaan's mother, Zaura Ali, told the court she believed her son had been bullied by a group of children in the area.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Mrs Ali said Subhaan could not swim well - only ever staying in the shallow end at the swimming pool - and was scared of water.

In a statement read to the court, she said: "My son's death has devastated my life, which is over."

She said: "I believe he must have been pushed," adding: "I will never accept he went into the water on his own."

Statements made by two boys who were with him were read to coroner Nicola Mundy.

The boys gave differing account of events leading up to Subhaan going into the water but agreed that he ran and jumped in without any force or coercion.

In his statement, read by Detective Constable Simon Taylor, one of the youngsters said: "He ran right fast, jumped high and landed in the middle of the canal."

Det Con Taylor told the court: "(The boy) reiterated that no-one had pushed Subhaan into the water."

Both the boys described how another boy in the group went into the water before Subhaan.

One said this boy lowered himself into the canal after Subhaan said: "One of you jump in and I'll jump in."

But the other young witness said in his statement that this other boy was pushed by another of the group.

The inquest continues. Ms Mundy said it is likely to finish on Thursday morning.