Tiware dam breach: Six of family dead, survivor hasn’t spoken since tragedy
Wrinkled face, sitting on a bench at a school in Tiware village, 85-year-old Bajaji Chavan, wears an eerie calm. He hasn’t spoken a word since the tragedy on Wednesday.
Of the 23 persons washed away in floodwater after the dam at Tiware breached late on Tuesday, six of them are from Bajaji’s family.
Those who lost their lives in the tragedy included Bajaji Chavan’s Chandrabhaga 60; son Ranjit 47; daughter-in-law Sharada, 42; his grandson and granddaughter and sister-in-law. The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) team recovered bodies of five of his family members while the search was on for daughter-in-law when the report went to press.
“The old man has not spoken a word since he heard about the loss of family members. We have told him about his family, but I think he is not in a state of mind to speak with anyone since Wednesday,” said Rajendra Kharat, talathi of the village, administrating rehabilitation work at the temporary centre at started by government Tiware village.
The villagers now are asking one question - who will look after Bajaji Chavan?
On the fateful night when dam breached, 12 houses completely washed away in the water. Among those houses also included Bajaji Chavan’s residence.
When the water began to flow out of the dam, Bajaji Chavan was not present in Bendewadi and had gone to Khed town to meet his daughter. He returned back on Wednesday morning immediately after hearing about the news. District administration has now kept him in a shelter home as dam water has washed his entire house with eight cattle and six family members.
“After every 20-30 minutes, he mourns for his family rather calmly,” said Nivrutti Gaikwad another one from the shelter home.
As most of his family members are missing or dead and by considering his age and loss, the government handed over the bodies to his daughter.
Bajaji Chavan also decided not to attend the cremation of his family members which was carried out at Chiplun on Thursday.