A mother wails as she is told that her child, only one year old, is no more. It was only in the morning that she had seen him playing before she left for work. But by afternoon she was desperately looking for him in a pile of rubble that stood in place of, what was only a few hours ago, Siddhi Sai Co-operative Housing Society in Damodar Park, Ghatkopar (West).
“Krishiv (one year old) was with his grandparents, Pandurang and Manorama Dongre, when the building came crashing down,” said Brijpal Thakur, a family friend. Residents of the second floor, they could not be found until late in the evening. Friends and family desperately searched all nearby hospitals and even filed a police complaint as rumours of the child being taken in an ambulance did the rounds.
However, all hope came to an end when they found the child’s body ensconced in his grandmother’s arms. “We tried to take him out carefully in the hope that he was still alive. But it was already over nine hours since the collapse and he was declared dead on arrival when he reached Rajawadi hospital,” added Thakur. Read: Ghatkopar building collapse survivors recount horror: Trapped under debris, man tells son on phone ‘I’m safe’ Click here
While going to the press, 12 people were brought dead to the hospital. Among them was also a three-month-old child and her mother. At Shantiniketan Nursing Home, the hospital closest to the site of the collapse, medical officers saw an unprecedented rush of anxious families crowding outside the tiny facility.
Only one family member was allowed to enter at a time and a list of those who had been brought there throughout the day had been displayed on the front door. By evening, four people had been brought dead there — Ranjanben Shah (62), Sulakshana Khanchandani (80), Amruta Thak (31) and Divya Ajmera (48). Their bodies were taken to Rajawadi Hospital for post mortem. Three others — Parjnaben Jadeja (53), Riti Khanchandani (46) and fireman Ganesh Thange (33) — were admitted to the hospital’s ICU. Five others were treated at Rajawadi hospital. Read: Ghatkopar building collapse: At least two feared trapped, two ‘missing’ Click here
Doctors at the hospital treated building residents Pritesh Shah, Paras Ajmera, Auldius D’Mello and Dharmishtha Shah for minor injuries, said the hospital. Pritesh Shah, sitting on a bench near the reception, was inconsolable as his daughter, 13-year-old Rutvi, was declared dead after being removed from the debris. A relative consoling him said Shah was one of the lucky ones as he made it out of the crumbling building before it came crashing down.