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Friday, April 10, 2020

Fifth day but no closure: Outside Delhi mortuary, relatives say wait is endless

A total of 42 people have died since the violence broke out. Of these, 38 were in GTB, three in Lok Nayak Hospital and one in Jag Pravesh Chandra Hospital. The mortuary at GTB Hospital has 15 bodies, of which nine have been identified.

Written by Astha Saxena , Sukrita Baruah | New Delhi | Published: February 29, 2020 3:09:02 am
Families outside the GTB mortuary Friday. (Express photo: Amit Mehra)

On Wednesday, cousins of Mohsin Ali (24) stood outside the GTB Hospital mortuary hoping not to find their brother inside. With his photo in hand, they went inside, only to return minutes later with grim news — they had identified Ali’s body. Taking a moment to digest the news, they started the paper work to take the body back to their native village in Hapur. According to the family, Ali’s car was torched when he was returning from work in Chand Bagh.

On Thursday, some of the family members were doubtful if it was him and requested to verify the body a second time. “The body we verified on Wednesday had different hair. This is not our brother,” said his cousin Haidar Ali, who has been at the hospital since Wednesday.

The family found hope again. They spent Thursday looking at bodies and also checked the spot where the charred remains of his car lay. “There was a body in the mortuary that was completely charred. We have asked authorities to conduct a forensic test to find out if it’s our brother,” said Ali.

Married in December, Mohsin was a generator worker and lived in Noida Sector 5.

A total of 42 people have died since the violence broke out. Of these, 38 were in GTB, three in Lok Nayak Hospital and one in Jag Pravesh Chandra Hospital. The mortuary at GTB Hospital has 15 bodies, of which nine have been identified.

On Friday, many families continued to flock hospitals in search of their loved ones who have been missing since the clashes

Among them is the family of Firoz Ahmed (35), whose wife Shahana last spoke to him at 11 pm Monday, when he called from an unknown number.

“He told me he had been beaten up badly and that a stranger had given him shelter in Karawal Nagar. He said the man had fed him and given him first-aid,” she said.

However, the number was unreachable the next day.

On Friday, Shahana looked for his body at GTB Hospital mortuary. “We have been looking for him in different hospitals. We even sent some people to check the place he said he was in… but many homes had been torched there,” said his uncle Anees Ahmed.

Meanwhile, Mahir (30), whose 13-year-old daughter went missing after going to school on Monday, was reunited with her on Friday.

“Police informed us that she was at her friend’s place in Meet Nagar. They found her and brought her back. She told us she didn’t come home and stayed at her friend’s place because of the riots. We are happy that nothing happened to her,” said Mahir.

Police had received a complaint from the girl’s father three days ago and had started looking for the girl. A senior police officer said they traced her location to Khajuri Chowk Friday.

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