The Saturday morning attack, presumably by the notorious Kala Kachha gang, on a joint family of 14 persons has left the victims shattered, and no money to pay for the treatment of the injured, or to pay the orchard owner for the annual contract.
Three seriously injured family members are still in a state of shock and unable to speak because of injuries. According to the family, the dacoits started mercilessly thrashing them before they could fully wake up.
“The PGI authorities are asking for a hefty sum for the surgery of my father and uncle who can hardly open their eyes. How shall we pay them? All money kept in the house was robbed. I’m trying to arrange money from relatives,” said Shiv Kumar, son of Chander Pal, one of the victims who was visiting the family that night.
Besides Chander Pal, the other person admitted to PGI is Bhikham alias Mahender, who is head of the extended family.
The family members said that with their cash and jewellery gone, there is uncertainty over their stay at the guava orchard near Rurkee village, where they had been living for the past several years.
“An exact idea of the loss can be made only after my elder brother Bhikham fully regains consciousness; he was the head of the house. I had come from Moradabad only four months ago. I never imagined this could happen to us,” said Suraj, who is admitted to GMSH-16.
Bhikham’s wife Kishori Devi and Suraj’s wife Poonam are also admitted to GMSH-16.
Those hospitalised are being looked after by their relatives in Chandigarh. The incident has marred an upcoming wedding in the family.
“On Friday evening, we were going to visit them at the orchard but cancelled the plan. One of the daughters in the family is getting married a few days from now, but this incident has left us in a shock. Look at my sister-in-law, she was tied and then beaten up,” said one of Bhikham’s sisters.
Suraj, who escaped the scene on the fateful night and called the police, said that after getting out of the orchard, he reached a neighbour but he refused to help. “I then walked quite a distance to my friend Raju’s place where we dialled 108 and informed the police, and then returned on a two-wheeler. While the police took a long time to arrive, the ambulance never showed up. We had to rush the victims to the hospital in a three-wheeler,” he said.
He also alleged that the police misbehaved with them on reaching the spot.