Well the ghosts or call them skeletons have to be brought out of the cupboards so that the securely kept emotions of disbelief and shock kept securely hidden inside my heart and soul could find some solace. This post is an effort to give a voice to all that I had experienced on that fateful Sunday, 21-12-2008, and the aftermaths of that don’t let me have a wink of sleep, even today almost after a year, as I am still searching for answers what might have happened on that black Sunday.
I had reached Noida after attending a Conference at IIT Guwahati and was blissfully happy to be with my eldest daughter who was bubbling with a glow and aura that comes when you have a life within you. Yes, she was pregnant. My first grandchild to be born was confirmed and I was just ecstatic. The mother in me was suddenly so very helpful towards my daughter. I wanted to prepare all that her heart craved for. It was such a good time. It was a lazy Sunday. After lunch, we all had a long siesta and were looking forward towards an evening out. It must have been 5 p.m.!
My BSNL connection was not working in the home of my daughter but it was not a big concern to me as I was not a person who keep on mobile all the time. My daughter’s mobile rang and it was my younger brother who had called up. My daughter, as usual indulged i nlight talk wit hher Mamu but cutting her short he asked, “Do you know where is Didi?” He was referring to me. “Ma is hers, wit hus.” and she handed the cell to me. “Hello!” I might have uttered these words when he said, “Didi, I got a call from Hamirpur, Jija Ji ko thodi lag gai hai.” “What?” I couldn’t believe it but honestly I felt as if he is talking about a very minor thing. “Where?” I asked. “Near Anu.” he replied. “he had a fall.”
I was alarmed. “Was it our car that is hit?” I asked. “I don’t know” he said. “I am going to Hamirpur, you too come to Hamirpur.” he said. I was in a shock. Nothing was clear. What had happened? How injured he was? I wanted to ask someone but whom should I call, I was thinking hard when the cell rang again. It was a stranger.
“Are you Saroj Thakur?”
“Yes, I am. May I know who are you?” I asked.
“What is this man to you?”
I was in a shock. He was referring to my husband, my KS! “My husband.”
“Whats his age?”
“Is is seriously injured?” I shouted. “What has happened to him?” I was literally helplessly shouting to a stranger.
“Please tell me soem details” he continued. “Is he on some kind of medication?”
“what?” I couldn’e make out anything of this question.
“We want to know whether he takes any medicine for Blood pressure or diabetes or any other disease?”
“No” I said, “he doesn’t take any medicine.” I literally pleaded, “please tell me how serious is he and waht has happened to him?
“He has had a serious head injury and is bleeding from the right ear.” He said in a mechanical manner.
I could not believe myself. Was this stranger talking about my husband or soemone else. How could KS be in such a situation. I was shaken. Mustering enough courage, i asked, “Tell me how has this happened to him and how serios is he?”
“We don’t know. He is unconscious and bleeding profusely from the right ear” adding further he said, “he was found lying at the roadside in this condition.”
It was horrible for me to imagine such a thing to have happened in our life. I asked him, “How serious is it?”
“It is a ver yserious condition. You better start fro Hamirpur and by that time ask someone you know to reach District Hospital Hamirpur. ‘he said and disconnected the call.
My daughter and her husband were sitting nearby. Both were too shocked and numb to say anything. My daughter started t ocry. I stopped her and said, “Nothing is going to happen to your Papa, don’t cry. He will be alright.”
I don’t really know where from I got such a courage and strength and a strong conviction that nothing is going to happen to him Whatever had happened, had happened and now nothing worse can happen. I started to move and pack my things. But I had some calls to make. I had to ask some persons in Hamirpur to reach Hospital. My brother had started but it would take three hours for him to reach Hamirpur and the thought that KS was lying there in the Hospital, unattended and alone, was killing me.
But whom should I call. Were there people that I still could trust? If you have such a feeling after working in an institute for more that 23 years, it surely reflects on the state of relationships that people had. But sadly this was the feeling I had. I called up few friend but none was in Hamirpur. There were some women friends who went immediately to the hospital.
I called a Taxi and started for Hamirpur. My son-in-law was with me. The plans for an evening out were shattered like so many of our dreams!
To be continued…