Families of victims who died in the blasts find no joy in convictions; say the wrongs can’t be righted
For Milind Indulkar, a death sentence isn’t harsh enough. The embittered son of Anita Indulkar, the sole person who died from the explosion at Vile Parle on January 27, 2003, feels that nothing can give his family closure — not even a death sentence for the accused. “Give them a punishment more severe than execution,” he demands.
Milind Indulkar had to turn into his siblings’ parent after Anita’s death. Pic/Shadab Khan
Anita had gone to the vegetable market on that day when a bomb on bicycle nearby went off around 8.30pm. And with that explosion, the Indulkars’ lives came apart. She was treated for her injuries at Cooper Hospital, but she died there on March 16.
Anita was the sole breadwinner of the family — her husband having passed away six months before the blast — struggling to raise her three children on her own by delivering home-cooked meals to hospitals. A young Milind found himself taking on parental roles after her death.
“I couldn’t even cry in front of my brother and 12-year-old sister as they would have slipped into depression and that would have affected their academics. Friends and neighbours helped me cope with the loss and take on my new responsibilities,” he says.
The family was given a compensation of Rs 1.70 lakh, but Milind never got the government job promised to him. “I ran after officials for over a year for this. I really needed a job back then since my mother was the sole breadwinner of the family,” says Milind.
The family may have come a long way since then — Milind (33) is a fitness trainer who lives with sister Anita, his wife and two children at Vile Parle (W), and younger brother Chetan works as a fitness consultant in Bahrain — but the pain of loss is still fresh.