Even as his whereabouts remain unknown after a week, the hopes of the relatives of Hirday Ram are still alive.
Hirday Ram is one of the three workers of Himalayan Construction, who were trapped in Tunnel Number 4 of Kiratpur-Nerchowk four-lane project last Saturday.
While the rescuers managed to establish contact with two workers — Satish Tomar and Mani Ram — fate of Hirday Ram is uncertain as there is no trace of him, so far.
“Our hopes are alive. We pray before the almighty that he comes out soon,” said Hirday Ram’s son-in-law Shiv Lal.
Shiv Lal, a soldier in the Indian Army, said he had talked to his father in the morning, the day tragedy struck. “He told me to take care of myself and that he and others in the family were fine.”
Meanwhile, Hirday Ram’s nephew Pankaj Kumar appreciated the efforts being put in by the rescuers and the administration to save the lives of trapped workers.
“We are a bit worried as there is no contact with him but are praying for his well being,” said Pankaj adding, “So much of work and efforts will not go in vain.”
He also expressed anguish over some news channels misquoting him and other family members.
The rescuers have drilled a vertical cavity to pull out two trapped workers with whom contact has been established.
The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) has brought advanced sensors to trace missing worker Hirday Ram.
Bilaspur deputy commissioner Manasi Sahay Thakur spoke to the two trapped workers with the help of a remote camera and microphone lowered into the communication channel on Saturday morning. Tomar seemed more concerned about his family than himself and told the officer to convey his message to the family that he was fit and fine and will meet them soon.
They have kept their morale high and look very confident, Thakur said. “We are all with you. You need not worry. Your family is also awaiting your early rescue. I will personally convey your message to them,” Thakur told Tomar.
Medical team is ready for the job
Dr Arvind Chopra, who is providing medical assistance in the rescue operation, told Hindustan Times that as soon as the workers will be pulled out, the doctors will do all the medical examination on the spot depending on their condition.
“We will check their blood pressure, oxygen carrying capacity of their blood, sugar level, apart from pulse examination. We have also brought blankets, which will be given to them if their body temperature is below normal,” said Dr Chopra.Living in dark for so long can have psychological effect on a person. However, they are acclimatised to such conditions, so there is a rare chance of it. We will allow one family member to meet them and they will be taken to hospital as some more medical examination will be needed, he added.