Tsunami swept away Das' daughter, wife

As did thousands of tsunami survivors, M.K. Das, a doctor, too lost his family and everything he owned when giant waves flattened the coastal communities around the island of Car Nicobar on December 26, 2004.

On that fateful morning, the suddenness of the tsunami's onslaught allowed for no preparations. It not only destroyed the survivors' homes and decimated their families but also robbed them of all traces of their place in the world.

Still searching

Mr. Das is still in search of his wife and youngest daughter. With tears in his eyes, he describes his pathetic situation. “My wife used to say that she had moved from a ‘white house' to a log cabin. She was from an affluent family and she grew up in an air-conditioned bungalow. She used to teach English at a school here, but always wanted to leave.

“I applied for transfer many times, but it never came. For much of the time that we had been together, I never did what she wanted. There was so much she could have achieved. I was never able to give her the opportunity,” he said.

“I went to the Car Nicobar island in search of my family and found only water and sand. With God's grace, I found my son, who was also on that island. He is the only survivor in my family now. I still believe that my daughter and wife are alive somewhere, and someday they will contact me.

“As a husband, a father, a human being, it is impossible not to wonder: what would I have done? Or, what would I have felt? It is difficult to choose to keep away from the past; the fact is, every morning I wake up and hope that today I will be contacted by someone who can provide me some information regarding my daughter and wife. ,” he added.