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Saturday, Sep 21, 2019

Burari deaths: Family was deeply religious, prayed thrice a day, say relatives, neighbours

Around 10 years ago, one of the family members had an accident due to which he lost his speaking ability. The family began praying and when he was cured of the problem, it made them deeply spiritual.

india Updated: Jul 02, 2018 09:24 IST
Shiv Sunny and Karn Pratap Singh
Shiv Sunny and Karn Pratap Singh
Hindustan Times, New Delhi

An accident and a subsequent “miracle” turned the Bhatia family deeply religious, said relatives and neighbours of the 11 people who were found dead on Sunday.

Around 10 years ago, Lalit Bhatia, 45, had an “accident”. According to Hemant Sharma, a family friend, the accident had occurred when a plank of wood had fallen on Lalit, who ran a plywood business.

“As a result, Lalit lost his speaking ability. The family tried all possible medications, but when that did not work, they began praying. When Lalit was cured of the problem, his family attributed it to their prayers. It made the family very spiritual,” said Sharma.

Neighbours said that the family would use plywood from their shop to propagate religious teachings. “Every day, someone or the other from the family would write a religious quote on a plywood and would put it outside their shop,” said a local.

According to another family friend Praveen Mittal, each member of that family prayed thrice every day. “They credited their success in business to their prayers. If there was a visitor at their home, all the children in the house would stand in a queue to touch the visitor’s feet,” said Mittal.

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Lalit’s brother, Bhavnesh, owned a grocery shop — both their businesses operating out of the ground floor of their house.

According to neighbours and relatives, the family were never in financial troubles, one of the grounds on which they swiftly dismissed police’s initial theory that it was a suicide pact.

“The family owns a three-storey floor on a plot of land measuring 150 square yards and located right next to the main road. They had begun renovations of the house and used high quality tiles and other construction material even on stairs. The cost of their house is more than several crores. They could not have been in a financial distress,” said Ramesh Tyagi, a local.

When the husband of their sister Pratibha died, the two brothers had decided to invite her and her daughter Priyanka, 33, to live with them. “The two brothers had taken it upon themselves to bear the expenses of Priyanka’s wedding which was scheduled for December,” said Tyagi.

Locals said the two brother did fairly well in their business. Apart from the two brothers, their niece Priyanka worked at a multi-national company in Noida while the two 15-year-olds were enrolled in a private English school.

First Published: Jul 02, 2018 09:24 IST