Mumbai: Illiterate driver gives life to three in death

Updated: Jan 28, 2020, 07:29 IST | Vinod Kumar Menon | Mumbai

Though he never went to school, 65-year-old from Darbhanga always believed donating his organs will be his service to humanity

Rajkumar Jha held a long-cherished wish to donate his organs
Rajkumar Jha held a long-cherished wish to donate his organs

This 65-year-old had never attended a day of school in his life, yet understood the value of organ donation more than most. Rajkumar Jha, a driver, whose deepest wish, according to his wife, was to donate his organs, was able to give three people a new lease of life after he was declared brain dead at Nanavati Hospital.

His kin, who arrived from Darbhanga, fulfilled his wish and donated his kidneys and liver. Each of his kidneys went to patients in Nanavati Hospital and Jaslok Hospital, while his liver was given to a patient suffering from end-stage liver failure at Global Hospital.

Soon after learning about his accident, Jha's wife, Kishoridevi, 52, and son Bipin, 29, rushed to Mumbai. It was because of Kishoridevi that their relatives and community in Mumbai agreed to the donation and the post-mortem. Jha had always wished to donate his organs and would often discuss the topic with his family.

Rajkumar Jha with his family
Rajkumar Jha with his family

A source at Nanavati Hospital said, "Jha was brought in an unconscious state. He was bleeding from the left side of his head, left nostril and left ear. He never came out of the comatose state. He was declared brain dead by the team of doctors treating him." The hospital learnt about Jha's wish during initial discussions held with the family.

His heart was not retrieved as there was no requirement for one. In addition, he had had issues with his vision so the corneas were not harvested.

"The post-mortem was conducted at Cooper hospital," said Bipin, Jha's youngest son, who used to work at a car accessory shop in Mumbai before he returned home. Bipin's three elder siblings — a brother and two sisters — married and settled in Darbhanga. Jha was to help Bipin set up a shop of his own there.

The family returned to Dharbanga after Jha's cremation in Mumbai. Bipin had spoken to his father just a day before the accident. "I was to return to Mumbai and work for my old employer. I never imagined that I'd return to see my father in a coma," he said.

"My father has set an example for the rest of our family. We too will donate our organs. I will make my children take the pledge too. My mother and father have inspired us. We are poor, but this is how we will serve humanity," he said.

The accident
According to Jha's nephew, Murari, 31, he was knocked down by a tempo in Juhu on January 20.

"He had parked his employer's car at their residence and was walking home at 8.40 am," he said. Police rushed Jha to R N Cooper Hospital, where doctors said that his condition is critical. Jha was then moved to Nanavati Hospital by his family. "Two days later, his condition worsened and he was pronounced dead," said Murari, who registered the FIR at Juhu police.

Senior Police Inspector Pandarinath Wavhal of Juhu police said, "The tempo driver, Vadivel Devendra, 28, was granted bail by the court. He has been booked for rash driving. We are touched by the family's gesture. The police team assisted them and Nanavati Hospital and issued the police's No Objection Certificates (NOC) as per the norms."

Donor transplants

Donor transplants done in Mumbai (1997 to Jan 04, 2020)

Kidney 832
Liver 366
Heart 128
Lung 18

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