When 78-year-old Dr Shyam Murari Kapoor, who was suffering from cancer, passed away on Sunday, head constables Ramesh and Jitender were among five people at the funeral.
The policemen, posted at Hari Nagar police station, had been taking care of Kapoor since April 19. “Kapoor uncle was humble and treated me like his son. On Sunday, when I received information about his death, I rushed to his house and found his body inside the bathroom. I was shocked and carried his body to the ambulance. I spoke to him on Saturday night; he had called and said he missed his sons and wanted to meet them. I had assured him that he will meet them soon,” said Ramesh.
Family members said the elderly man had been living alone in West Delhi’s Hari Nagar for a “very long time” and his sons lived in Hyderabad and England. Due to the lockdown, his family members couldn’t come to Delhi and take care of him.
Mukta, Kapoor’s niece, said, “The policemen helped us a lot, they bought medicines and food for uncle. On Sunday, before I could reach his house, the policemen were already there and had shifted his body. I was confused as to what to do next. They handled everything — from the post-mortem to the final rites. I called other relatives but only two of them could make it. Most of our relatives couldn’t get passes… But the policemen stood there and helped with all the arrangements.”
Head constable Ramesh said he first met Dr Kapoor on April 19, when he called the police as he “wasn’t feeling well”. When Ramesh reached the house, he found that Kapoor had a high fever and lived alone.
“He was frail and lying on his bed. He told me about his family, and I took him to DDU Hospital and called his niece. We waited for three-four hours until his niece came. She shifted him to Sir Ganga Ram Hospital. I was told that he has cancer and needed someone to be with him. Our staff was helpful, and we took care of him,” he said.
The policemen had also hired a medical attendant to stay with Kapoor after he was discharged. They checked on him every day and also provided him with ration and medicines.
“He treated us like one of his own. So it was our responsibility to help him when he needed us,” he said.
We had to be part of his final journey especially in a time when both his sons were stuck outside Delhi due to the lockdown
Head constable Jitender said they often keep a check on the well-being of senior citizens in their area.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines