Cleveland State associate biology professor electrocuted in lab

Published: Aug. 17, 2005 at 3:04 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 17, 2005 at 3:14 PM EDT
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CLEVELAND - A biology professor at Cleveland State University was electrocuted Tuesday morning while working in a lab.

Two students who were in the lab told police Tarun K. Mal, 42, was plugging something into an electrical outlet when he collapsed shortly before 11 a.m.

University police are investigating and have sealed off the lab, said Brian Johnston, a Cleveland State spokesman. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration also will investigate, because the incident happened while Mal was at work.

"He was a highly respected and very accomplished man," Johnston said.

Mal came to the university in 1999 and was an associate professor in the biology department. He was born in India and received his doctorate at the University of Windsor in Ontario, Canada.

On his Web site, Mal said he was working on a variety of research projects including studying the effects of humans on natural resources in highly populated urban areas.

Mal leaves behind a wife and 3-year-old daughter. His wife, Sanchita Mal-Sarkar, is a lecturer at Cleveland State in the computer and information sciences department.

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