The day after: families of victims cope with grief and trauma
Relatives of Kishan Shivsadan Mandal, 35, who died in the Zaveri Bazar blast, were glad that his family was not in Mumbai to see the gruesome condition of Mandal's body.mumbai Updated: Jul 15, 2011 00:42 IST
Victim’s family glad they didn’t see mutilated body
New Delhi: Relatives of Kishan Shivsadan Mandal, 35, who died in the Zaveri Bazar blast, were glad that his family was not in Mumbai to see the gruesome condition of Mandal's body.
Only Mandal's head was found at the blast site while the rest of his body was blown to smithereens.
Mandal, who is from the Darbhanga district in Bihar, came to Mumbai a few years ago to take up a job and was staying in Kalwa.
He was working at Ashrat Lal and Sons, a jewellery shop in Zaveri Bazar.
Mandal had gone to collect money on the instruction of his employer. It was only a few minutes later that the bomb at Zaveri Bazar went off.
On hearing about the blasts, Mandal's family members and relatives started frantically calling him. However, his mobile phone was switched off. His family then got in touch with their relatives in Mumbai and asked them to check on Mandal.
"On enquiring with the policemen, we found out that the injured had been rushed to the hospital. We found him in the list of dead at GT Hospital and informed his family," said a relative who did not wished to be named.
‘I have lost my brother and sole breadwinner for family’
Sonal Shukla and Bhavika Jain
Mumbai: Through Wednesday night Tanvi Bhuwad kept trying to call her brother Tushar Kolambe's cell phone, but failed to get a response. Kolambe worked as a peon in a diamond trader's office on the second floor of the Panchratna Building in Opera House, one of the sites where blasts occurred on Wednesday evening.
"We watched the news of the blast on television and began calling him frantically on his mobile phone. Finally, a policeman answered the phone and informed us that he had been taken to the hospital," said Bhuwad, 25, Kolambe's younger sister.
Kolambe, 29, succumbed to his injuries on Wednesday night. "I have lost my brother and my family has lost the sole breadwinner," said Bhuwad.
The Kandivli resident had been working the diamond at the trading hub for the last 10 years. On Wednesday, Kolambe's employer had asked him to step out of office to make photocopies of some documents. The short trip to the nearby shop was his last trek. Around 6.55pm, Kolambe was still at the shop, which is very close to the lane between Panchratna building and Prasad Chambers, when the bomb went off.
Kolambe's mobile phone fell from his pocket. Bystanders rushed his charred body to Hurkisondas Hospital.
Elsewhere, Dilip Soni, who owns a jewellery shop at Mumbai Central, is blaming himself for his son, Pankaj’s death. Soni had asked Pankaj to run an errand at Zaveri Bazar on Wednesday evening. Pankaj, 21, a second year commerce student, was the eldest of Soni’s two sons. The family is from Rajasthan and lives at Charni Road.
Newly married, he was to take his wife for a holiday
Soubhik Mitra and Bhavika Jain
Mumbai: After a 12-hour run between hospitals and police stations, Faiz Mohammed, 59, was too tired to even articulate his feelings about losing his youngest son, Asghar, 29, in the Opera House blast on Wednesday. After the burial ceremony on Thursday morning, Mohammed was clinging to a postcard size photograph of Asghar. The photograph was taken less than two months ago at Asghar’s May 15 wedding reception. “It’s all over. He was the sole breadwinner of the family,” said Mohammed.
His two elder sons have low-paying jobs, and the family’s hopes of a better future were pinned on Asghar’s diamond trading business that was doing well. Mohammed works as a volunteer with a charitable trust offering free medical aid to the poor. Struggling to come to terms with the tragedy, Asghar’s wife, Salma, locked herself in their fourth-floor apartment on a bylane off Mohammed Ali Road.
Asghar, fondly known as ‘Batatawala’ for his love for vegetables, had promised to take Salma on a monsoon get-away to a hill station. “He had come home for lunch in the afternoon and promised to return early as it was raining. But that never happened,” said Mohammed.
‘The first body I saw was of my son’
Mumbai: Meet Shah, 12, was playing a videogame when his father, Sandeep Shah, 38, was cremated on Thursday afternoon. Still unaware that his father will no longer pick him up from school every day, Meet spent the day at his uncle’s house playing with his cousins.
“We have not yet told our grandson anything,” said Champaklal Shah, are tired diamond trader. Sandeep, Champaklal’s youngest son, was one of the 10 who were killed in Wednesday’s blast at Opera House. Tears filled up his eyes as he recalled the last time he saw his son.
“We were all together at the hall of the Diamond Traders Association at 6.30pm on Wednesday. I decided to leave and Sandeep said he would join me in a few minutes. I walked off and the next thing I heard was a blast. First, I thought it was a cylinder blast. I tried calling Sandeep but could not get through and then my heart sank,” he said, sitting in his home in Khetwadi.
A family friend informed them that Sandeep had been taken to Saifee Hospital. “We rushed to the casualty ward and the first body I saw was my son’s,” Champaklal said.
Champaklal’s brother-in-law, Indarnath Parikh, was by him all day. “The police was very helpful and so was the staff at Saifee. We have to be strong. We don’t walk around with security guards, we need to safeguard ourselves,” said Parikh. A floor above him in the same building, all the women had gathered around Kanan, Sandeep’s wife who has not spoken a word since she heard about her husband’s death.