Distraught parents and inconsolable relatives, friends hiding their tears and trying to console each other — these were just some of the sights at the mortuary of the Government Royapettah Hospital on Tuesday afternoon.
The bodies of Shivakumar, 19, Bharat, 16, Naveen Kumar, 25, and an unidentified passenger, victims of the St. Thomas Mount accident, were brought there.
Bharat’s family was in a state of shock, with some of them passing out. Hospital staff gave them medical attention even as police tried to console them.
“He wanted to become a police officer and was a good student,” said Murugan, a relative. He said that the accident would not have happened had he stayed at his parents place in Pozhichalur.
“There was a misunderstanding between his parents, hence he was staying át his grandmother’s house in Kasimedu. He used to travel by train to school in the southern suburbs daily,” added Mr. Murugan, wiping away tears. Relatives of Shivakumar, the college student, could not control their tears. His friends were standing around the family. “He will not come back, we can never see him again,” said one of them.
Two of the injured — Naresh, 20, and Vignesh, 19, — were admitted to the Royapettah Hospital. While Mr. Naresh had suffered facial injuries, Mr. Vignesh had fractured his right leg. “I was in the last coach. I remember falling down and after that I saw lot of people running towards me,” said Mr. Naresh. Mr. Vignesh, in an adjacent bed, was fast asleep. Murthy, 18, who was rushed to the Rajiv Gandhi Government General Hospital (RGGGH), lost both legs. “He suffered traumatic amputation below the knees at the site. At the hospital, we took care of the leaking blood vessels,” a doctor said. His lower limbs were transported from the site in ice by staff of the 108 ambulance service to check if they were fit for re-implant. However, the doctor said, the limbs were “mangled” and not “re-implantable”.
“Portions of both legs were severely damaged in the accident. The mangled portions cannot be re-implanted,” the doctor added.
Two others — Vijay, 18, and Yazar, 23 — were also brought to the RGGGH. Hospital authorities said they were out of danger. Mr. Vijay’s left leg was crushed, while Mr. Yazar suffered a forearm fracture. They would undergo surgeries.
Outside the casualty ward at the RGGGH, friends of Yazar waited anxiously for information on his condition.