The ritual of attending Ganapati celebrations at their native place turned out to be a disaster for two families from Kandivali, who not only lost seven members but also have been praying for the lives of two others who are undergoing treatment in hospital.
One of the nine members, who survived the tragic accident that took place on expressway on Monday, spoke to mid-day on Tuesday from the bed of MGM, Kamothe, where he is being treated for multiple injuries.
Fifteen-year-old Pratik Dhonde who is not aware of the death of both his parents and relatives, said that he can hardly recollect the turn of events of the ill-fated day as he fell unconscious right after the incident.
“I do not remember anything as I fell unconscious. Everything happened in fraction of a second. When I opened my eyes, my uncle was besides me and I was in a hospital in severe pain,” said Pratik.
Relatives of the victims revealed that it was almost a custom for both the families to go to Satara every year to celebrate the Ganapati Festival. “It is a very difficult time for all of us. It came as a shock to the entire extended family and friends as they had not perceived something like this will ever happen. Apart from Pratik and Pooja (14), the two children, everybody else who was in the vehicle succumbed to injuries at the spot of the accident,” said Shankar More, a relative of the Dhonde family.
Doctors confirmed that while Pratik has suffered severe injuries on his back and right hand, Pooja is critical due to the head injury and is in the ICU. Both the children haven’t been told about the demise of their relatives as yet. “We have still not informed them about other family members and would do that once they come out of this trauma,” More added.
Apparently, bodies of all the deceased were immediately transferred to their village in Satara for performing last rites after the post mortem was conducted at the Panvel Civil Hospital.