Karnal's tattoo artist recalls horror of quake after safe return from Nepal | punjab | Hindustan Times
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Karnal's tattoo artist recalls horror of quake after safe return from Nepal

Local tattoo artist Vicky, who returned safely from Nepal on Sunday afternoon, recalled horrifying details of Saturday's earthquake in Kathmandu and a series of powerful aftershocks.

punjab Updated: Apr 26, 2015 22:04 IST
Vishal Joshi
The-hand-of-a-dead-woman-is-seen-after-rescue-workers-recovered-it-from-debris-in-Bhaktapur-near-Kathmandu-Nepal-AP-Photo
The-hand-of-a-dead-woman-is-seen-after-rescue-workers-recovered-it-from-debris-in-Bhaktapur-near-Kathmandu-Nepal-AP-Photo

Local tattoo artist Vicky, who returned safely from Nepal on Sunday afternoon, recalled horrifying details of Saturday's earthquake in Kathmandu and a series of powerful aftershocks.

A resident of Old Bahadur Chand Colony in the city, Vicky had gone to participate in the 5th International Nepal Tattoo Convention being organised at Kathmandu.

Talking to Hindustan Times, Vicky, who has a tattoo studio at sector 13 market here, said, "I was on the second floor of a five-star hotel, Yak and Yeti, for the convention when suddenly electricity supply snapped around noon on Saturday. As windowpanes begin shattering due to massive earthquake, visitors, including several foreigners, at the packed hotel started running for their lives," he said.

Vicky said that he, along with others, stopped people from jumping from the hotel windows.

"I am not sure if anyone at the hotel died or suffered grave injuries but there was complete chaos. I had never imagined anything more horrifying. Everyone was shocked to witness buildings falling and the hotel where we were staying also developed huge cracks," he said.

Vicky said as aftershocks were experienced, people all around were heard crying.

"As we spent the night in the open amid powerful aftershocks, I could see death on the faces of people around me. Shocked hearts were unable even to say prayers. I unsuccessfully tried to capture chilling scenes on my mobiles," he said.

He said that the international airport at Kathmandu was around 10km from the hotel and the journey of rescue was even more shocking.

"There were huge cracks on the highways and only heaps of damaged buildings were visible along it. Local residents and rescue teams were seen running for survivors," he said.

However, he lauded the efforts of the Indian authorities for prompt rescue of stranded Indians and major initiatives for quake victims.

"I telephonically contacted the Indian embassy in Kathmandu and they readily gave rescue details. At around 3.30am on Sunday we were flown back to New Delhi amidst announcements at Kathmandu that shipments of blood, food packets, water and disaster relief teams from India has started reaching Nepal," he said.

Meanwhile, Vicky appealed people to make sincere efforts to ensure safe future of hapless citizens of the neighbouring Himalayan state.

"As Nepal is entirely tourism-dependent economy, catastrophe has left the Nepalese worried about their future. It was horrifying to see high-rise buildings and monuments turned into debris. After innumerable loss of humans and property in a few moments, people were heard discussing the fate of those survived. Nepal is a poor country and as there is hardly anything left to attract foreign tourists, people seem to have lost their source of income," he said.