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Blast changes lives of victims, kin

Explosion traumatises witnesses. Hospitals lament chaos, while relatives miffed with 'medical negligence'

For Amanpreet Singh (21), practicing law proved to be a wrong decision. Singh, who was a second-year law student at Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University (GGSIP), is among the people who lost their lives in the blast on Wednesday.




Shaken: Relatives of blast victims at RML hospital, in New Delhi on
Wednesday. Pics/Subhash Barolia

"We did not know that the first day of his practice will turn out to be a day of mourning. He was at the court because he wanted to practice with a good lawyer. It was a part of his studies. We ran to the hospital as soon as we came to know of the incident. But when we came to know that we have lost our son, our world came to a standstill," said Manjeet Singh, his relative.

Fighting for the rights of his son Shahnabaz, 70-year-old Nizam-ud-din lost his life at the blast site. Nizam-ud-din was at the high court to meet a lawyer as it was the day for his son's hearing, presently in jail. "He went to meet the lawyer. It was the day of our son's hearing.

I did not know that to get my son free, I would have to lose my husband. We have never wronged others, why did God do this to my family?" said Mumtaz, his wife. Ashok Randhawa, president, South Asian Forum of People against Terrorism, was at the spot after the blast. After assisting the rescue work at the high court, he, along with his team of five to six members, came to RML hospital.

"I was present when the blast at Sarojini Nagar took place in 2005. With the grace of God, I was saved that time. I had then realised what trauma people go through at such a time. From then on I have been helping people. We distributed mineral water to the patients as well as their family members. This is a time when they would need support from every where. We will be there 24X7 to help them," said Randhawa.

Anil Gupta, president, Bharat Raksha Morcha said, "We have many friends working in the high court. We are visiting all the patients in the hospital. If they face any problem, we are here to provide assistance. Patients here are not getting proper care; there is lack of communication between the doctors and the nursing staff."
After the blast, injured were taken to Ram Manohar Lohia (RML), hospital, Lok Nayak Jai Prakash (LNJP), All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and Safdarjung hospital. Around 57 injured were admitted to RML, of whom two have been referred to AIIMS, nine were brought dead, and two died during treatment.

"As many as 17 are really critical. Most of them have lower limb injuries. Two patients, who died, had multiple injuries," said one of the doctors on duty. People could be seen running from pillar to post. Rajni Bakshi, had come to the hospital to look for her husband. She finally found him in the emergency. A lot of chaos was created in the hospital as security staff found it difficult to manage people. Some time later, the entrance towards the OPD was broken by the public. "We have been standing here for two hours. One of our family members is inside the hospital, but they are not allowing us to go inside," said one Sajjan Kumar.

"We are facing a shortage of beds, but that will soon be managed. Those who are being operated upon will be transferred to wards, and other patients will be given their beds," said another doctor, who did not wish to be named.

"It is negligence on the part of medical administration. Most patients have injuries on hands and legs. If they die, it's shameful," said Onkar Singh Thapar, chairman, Punjab State Industrial Development Corporation Limited.

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