Mumbai

Metro Cinemas tree fall leaves man paraplegic

Tragedy-struck: Santosh Singh (left) with his parents in happier times.

Tragedy-struck: Santosh Singh (left) with his parents in happier times.  

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He ran sandwich stall with father, who died in the mishap

Twenty-eight-year-old Santosh Singh, who was injured in Sunday’s tree fall incident near Metro INOX Cinemas, has become paraplegic.

Doctors at GT Hospital said Mr. Singh has no sensation in his lower body due to a severe fracture in the spine. He also has an ankle fracture and a head injury. The family is already grieving the death of Mr. Singh’s 60-year-old father, Rajendra, in the same incident.

Mr. Singh’s elder sister, Reenu Singh, said, “My father’s body is still in the morgue. We don’t know how and when to complete the last rites as my brother cannot move.” She said the family has not told Mr. Singh about their father’s death. “He has been asking about our father. We have told him that he has been operated on, and is in the Intensive Care Unit,” Ms. Singh said.

According to spine surgeon Dr. Dhiraj Sonawne, Mr. Singh has not responded to pinpricks in the lower part of his body. “There is absolutely no movement even in his toes, which is worrisome when it comes to prognosis in such cases. He will require surgery, but we are waiting for a few medical reports before that,” Dr. Sonawne said.

Mr. Singh, a resident of Kalyan, ran a sandwich stall with his father near Metro INOX Cinemas. On Sunday evening, a tree branch came crashing down on their stall, injuring them and three other people. Two of the victims required only first aid, while 74-year-old Bastian P.V. was declared brought dead and Rajendra succumbed a few hours after admission to hospital.

According to Alok Shukla, a friend of the Singh family, the father and son had made several complaints to the civic body about pruning the tree as they thought it could be dangerous. “I don’t know if they made written or verbal complaints,” Mr. Shukla said. He said the BMC’s negligence had cost the family everything. “This is like murder,” Mr. Shukla said.

Ms. Singh said her brother has been paying monthly home loan instalments of ₹30,000 for the last three years, since they bought the residence in Kalyan. Last month, he took another loan of ₹5 lakh for his eldest sister Seema’s wedding. “The daily earnings from the stall would be around ₹2,000. My brother was the one who managed everything. The negligence of BMC workers has brought this turmoil on our family,” she said.

Civic officials had said on Sunday that the tree had been trimmed before monsoon.

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Printable version | Dec 9, 2019 9:04:42 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/metro-cinemas-tree-fall-leaves-man-paraplegic/article24256911.ece

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