A 92-year-old man long considered dead by his family has returned home after 40 years. Panchkari Hazra disappeared from his home in North 24 Parganas disrict after a family disagreement in 1968.
On Sunday, his younger son Tarun spotted him in Kolkata's Behala area and got his father home. Panchkari’s wife Annapurna, who had made peace with a widow’s life, did not first know how to react.
But Hazra’s younger son and neighbours greeted the news with elation and smeared vermilion on her forehead.
The couple’s 53-year-old elder son Arun is not the happiest though. “I was eight monthsold when he left us. Since then I’ve not heard from him,” he said.
Arun had persuaded his mother to sign some documents in 1980 verifying her widow status. This helped him obtain a job at the Kachrapara railway workshop.
Although Arun wanted to conduct a DNA test on Panchkari, others in the family have accepted the patriarch.
“My mother has recognised him. So, on Sunday we arranged a marriage ceremony and our neighbours participated in it,” Tarun told HT.
The return has created a rift between his two sons. The elder one is unhappy because the head of the family can now decide on the inheritance. The younger one is happy he will get equal rights.
In 24 hours, the quarrel has made the father unhappy. “I left because of differences of opinion. I would like to see my family happy. If this rift continues, I'll leave again,” he said