rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 
Rediff.com  » News » How long will government's compensation last: 13/7 victim's kin

How long will government's compensation last: 13/7 victim's kin

Last updated on: July 21, 2011 08:25 IST

They have lost the family's only breadwinner

     Next

Next
Prasanna D Zore
The Das family is a yet another victim of terror that struck Mumbai on July 13. Forty-two-year-old Baburam Das who breathed his last on Saturday is survived by an aging mother, an ill wife and a teenage son. Having lost the sole breadwinner of the family, the future may seen insecure for now, but Baburam's son is determined to pick up the pieces and make his father proud.

"We are alive because of what he did for us," said 62-year-old Latika Das, as she remembered her son Baburam, 42, the 19th victim of the bomb blasts that rocked Mumbai on July 13.

Grief-stricken she has come from Domjur in West Bengal's Howrah district to stand by her widowed daughter-in-law, Pronoti and grandson Abhishek.

"My son left our home in Domjur when he was seven and went to stay with his aunt in Kolkata," said Latika pensively.

Since then Baburam did not return to his hometown. In Kolkata, he grew up to become a jewellery craftsman and came to Mumbai when he was 22, as he wanted to "do something better in life," said his wife. At the age of 25, he married Pronoti; she was only 15 then. Years later, she too moved to Mumbai and they started a family.

Click NEXT to read further...


Image: Latika Das with daughter-in-law Pronoti and son Abhishek. Inset Baburam
Photographs: Prasanna D Zore
     Next

'Future of Baburam's family is insecure'

Prev     Next
Prev

Next
Pronoti recalled her husband as a hard-working man, who wanted to earn a decent livelihood. "My husband would work for almost nine to 10 hours every day," she said.

Baburam would start work at 1.45 pm and retire at 11 pm. He would venture out of his rented Zaveri Bazaar office in the evening to collect material for jewellery designing assignments. And on July 13 at 6.45 pm he did just that when he became victim of the terror attack.

Pronoti was not too comfortable talking to this correspondent. Wednesday made it only a week since her world came crashing down. It was Baburam's elder sister Aarti Mondal who spoke to the media flocking at their doorstep.

"What do you want me to say," asked Aarti making no effort to hide her pain and anguish. "Of course, my mother, Baburam's wife and son face an insecure and bleak future."

Baburam's son Abhishek is only 14 and studies in class IX in Mother Mary English High School in Bhayendar, a distant Mumbai suburb. Pronoti, who recently underwent stomach surgery to remove a small tumour, has not been keeping too well. She is unsure -- and perhaps scared -- to venture out in search of employment.

"How long will the money that government is doling out last when they have lost the sole breadwinnner of the family," asked Aarti, being fully aware that the family now have an arduous journey ahead.

 


Image: Abhishek outside Saifee Hospital with his family
Photographs: Prasanna D Zore
Prev     Next

'Govt officials very helpful through the ordeal'

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

It was only on Tuesday that Shrikant Parui, Pronoti's brother who like Baburam works as a jewellery maker at Zaveri Bazar, collected a cheque of Rs 5 lakh that Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan had announced as compensation to the family of the victims of 13/7 Mumbai bomb blasts.

"Once we deposit this cheque, the compensation of Rs 2 lakh announced by the prime minister will be deposited directly to his wife's bank account," said Parui, citing state government officials who, he added, have been very helpful all through the ordeal.

Parui has been running from pillar to post since the blasts. "Since then he has slipped into depression. He was by Baburam's hospital bed till he breathed his last on Saturday," said Aarti.

 


Image: Baburam's name is seen on the society board
Photographs: Prasanna D Zore
Prev     Next

I want to grow up to become an engineer: Baburam's son

Prev     More
Prev

More
Pronoti may have lost her husband, but she is still grateful to a stranger who came to her husband's rescue when terror struck. "It was Kaushik, a Kandivali resident, a complete stranger to Baburam, who reached out to him that tragic evening," recalled Pronoti. "He called us after searching for our contact number in my husband's phonebook. We informed Shrikant and asked him to rush to Saifee Hospital."

Baburam's lower body was badly mutilated and he suffered two strokes while on a ventilator, but his family hoped that his condition would improve. But luck did not favour the Das family.

"He was in no position to speak to us. He was on ventilator till he breathed his last," said Pronoti.

Life has come to standstill for Pronoti and her son, but the 14-year-old is determined to pick up the pieces. "I want to become an engineer when I grow up," said Abhishek, clad in a dhoti and shawl after performing some rituals that follow the last rites. His mother contemplates the life ahead.

 


Image: A notice announcing Baburam's death in his housing society
Photographs: Prasanna D Zore
Prev     More