Diwali has left painful scars for this 14-year-old after he sustained 25 per cent burn injuries to his face and left hand when bursting a bomb went awry. The Sion Koliwada resident was almost blinded when the gunpowder from the crackers missed his eye. The incident took place on Sunday morning when he snuck out of his house and tried to light a bomb with a matchstick.
Unable to resist the lure of lighting crackers, Adeel Shaikh defied his parent’s instructions of not lighting crackers and snuck out of his home on Sunday at 9.30 am. “He removed the gun powder from fireworks lying on the floor and found a rassi bomb in one of the boxes left behind by our neighbours,” said Adeel’s elder brother Abdul.
Abdul added that as soon as the lit matchstick came in contact with the fireworks, it exploded in Adeel’s face. “It narrowly missed his eye,” Abdul said. While he narrowly escaped being blinded, his palm and fingers were burnt and his brother and family rushed him to nearby Sion Hospital.
A doctor from the hospital said that though Shaikh sustained only 25 per cent burns, he might require plastic surgery after eight to ten weeks on his left hand. “The burn injuries on his face are superficial and though some gunpowder entered his eyes, luckily, there’s no harm. After a few weeks, he will require skin grafting for his hand,” said the doctor adding that the teenager was currently recuperating in the general ward of the hospital.
Adeel’s father told MiD DAY that they had warned their son about the dangers of lighting firecrackers. “We warned him and hadn’t even bought any firecrackers. Unfortunately, he snuck outside when we were busy and got hurt.”
Safer Diwali for pets
No animals were injured as of Saturday owing to firecrackers. JC Khanna, secretary, Bombay Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (BSPCA), said, “Thankfully, we did not see any animals with burn injuries so far. Last year after Diwali, we saw at least six to eight injured stray dogs.”