At a time when the Government Railway Police (GRP) and the staff of civic-run hospitals have been at the receiving end for mishandling train mishap victims, a GRP official and a nurse from Rajawadi Hospital did something extraordinary. The two helped a 55-year-old woman reunite with her family after the elderly lady went missing for more than two weeks from her Antop Hill residence.
Critical: Merunisa Fakir Sheikh recuperating at the MICU in Rajawadi Hospital
Merunisa Fakir Sheikh, a former railway employee, left her house on April 19, saying that she was going out for a walk, but failed to return home. Her kin finally lodged a complaint at the local police station after their attempts to trace her proved futile.
“On May 5, a few commuters approached me and informed about an old woman lying on platform no 2. She was unconscious, so I immediately called for a stretcher and an ambulance. She was rushed to Rajawadi Hospital in the afternoon,” said Vilas Maruti Sargar, a GRP constable at Kurla station.
After Sheikh was admitted to the general ward, an on-duty nurse found Rs 47,000 and a pair of gold earrings that were neatly wrapped in a plastic bag and stuffed inside her clothes. Nurse Anita Kolapte immediately informed the GRP officials about the money and valuables.
After Sheikh was diagnosed with convulsions, she was shifted to the hospital’s Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) for further treatment. Dr Vidya Thakur, medical superintendent of the hospital, said, “She is on ventilator and is still unconscious, due to which the cops have been unable to record her statement. Initially she was admitted to the hospital as an unknown patient, but the nurse and doctors established her identity through an identity card she had on her.”
Besides contacting Sheikh’s family, Sargar handed over the money and earrings to her daughter Noor. Speaking to mid-day, Sheikh’s granddaughter Asma said, “She retired in January as a peon at CST station. She soon got bored of her retired life and started frequenting the dargah in Ajmer alone. She would usually return in two days. But when she did not did, we filed a missing person complaint. We have no idea why she ran away from home.”
Sheikh is still critical and the doctors said she would be kept under observation for the next few days. Thakur said, “I am proud of my staff for coordinating with the GRP officials and helping the family reunite with the patient. We are ensuring that she gets the best treatment and makes a speedy recovery.”