Ganesh Rathod wore a dazed look as he stared at the Infosys building on the campus of Sassoon General Hospital, where a makeshift burns ward has been set up. Soon after, he burst into tears as he cried bitterly asking his friends “Kay zaala, kay Zaala (what happened..).”
Rathod, who stays at Rupee nagar in Pimpri-Chinchwad and is a site supervisor at a private firm, when he got a call that his wife Kavita (45) and daughter Shilpa suffered critical burn injuries in a fire that broke out at sparkle candle manufacturing unit in Talawade. “My wife and daughter have been visiting this unit for almost four to five months.
There were no proper arrangements. They would leave at 9am and return home 6pm, barely making Rs 250-300 (each) per day,” said Rathod.
As the enormity of the devastating incident again hit him , Rathod sat down on the floor and wept uncontrollably. “How do I tell my other daughter who is in Narayanpur what has happened?” he cried. Shivaji Kumbhar, who is Rathod’s neighbour, tried consoling him but in vain. Kavita has suffered 40-45 per cent burns while Shilpa has 90-95 per cent burns.
At the first floor of the building where a 20-bed makeshift burns unit has been set up, Vanita Torne, who works with a patient care bureau at Ravet, waits with her brother Sachin Dhobale from Pimple-Gurav as both her daughters Apeksha (18) and Prateeksha (16) have suffered critical burns.
“Some passerby alerted me about the incident. One of my daughters must have given the number. Prateeksha is extremely critical and is on ventilator support,” the mother says bravely holding back tears.Prateeksha has 90-95 per cent burns and Apeksha has 80-85 per cent burns.
Dr Sujeet Divhare, acting medical superintendent at B J Government Medical College and Sassoon General Hospital, said 10 people who had suffered burn injuries were admitted to Sassoon General Hospital’s burns unit. Since renovation work is underway at Jacob Sassoon building where the burns ward is located, a makeshift one has been operational at the Infosys building on the campus.
Dr Nikhil Panse, assistant professor, Department of Plastic Surgery, said four to five patients were critical as they sustained 80 per cent burns. Nine of the ten persons admitted to the burns unit are women. Four require intensive care, of whom one is on ventilator support.
“All have suffered inhalational burn injuries and depending on the extent of injury, have been administered IV fluids,” said Dr Panse adding that the next four to five days were critical for the patients.