In a strange incident, a man who had gone missing some 33 years ago returned to his home in Rajasthan's Alwar much to the astonishment of his family who had stopped believing that he could be alive and had even got a death certificate made for him.
75-year-old Hanuman Saini used to work in Delhi's Khari Baoli from where he suddenly went missing in 1989. He was given a hero's welcome when he returned home to Bansoor village of Alwar district on May 30, after a gap of over three decades, with people thronging his home as he reunited with his family.
When he was away all of Saini's five children -- three daughters and two sons – had got married.
The septuagenarian claimed that he had spent the last 33 years at the 'Kangra Mata' temple in Himachal Pradesh doing meditation in devotion to the goddess.
His family had lost all hope of finding him and believing him to be dead, had even conducted last rites for him and obtained a death certificate in his name.
Saini claims that he got a call from 'Kangra Mata' and after a long meditation of 33 years, the goddess asked him to return to his family.
"When I boarded the train (in 1989) the TT asked for a ticket but I had only Rs 20 with me and he was kind enough to give me a ticket till Pathankot, from where I reached Kangra Mata temple in Himachal and spent 33 years in the service and worship of Mataji," Saini told ANI.
"In between, I went to Gangasagar and Kali Maiya temple in Kolkata. Finally, after completing my meditation and worship, the goddess directed me to return home and I came back to my family."
On May 29, Saini reached Khairthal in Rajasthan by train and spent the rest of the journey on foot, arriving at the Tatarpur crossing at night.
On the morning of May 30, while he was seeking help from some locals in finding his way back home, one person recognised him and took him back to his house in Alwar.
Hanuman Saini's elder son Ramchandra said that after their father remained missing for 33 years, the family had lost all hopes of him being found. They were also facing problems in land-related issues. So, in 2022, they got the death certificate for him made through the court.
"We had given up hope of father being alive but we are delighted that he came back. We were very young back then and had not even seen him properly. Today we are extremely happy as our father has returned to the family," Ramchandra Saini said.