• Friday, April 18, 2014

Abandoned Bomb in Rajshahi

5-yr-old hurt critically

Staff Correspondent
Five-year-old Mahin at RMCH yesterday after he picked up an abandoned homemade bomb on the premises of an Awami League office in Upashahar area and it exploded. Photo: Star
Five-year-old Mahin at RMCH yesterday after he picked up an abandoned homemade bomb on the premises of an Awami League office in Upashahar area and it exploded. Photo: Star

Another child had his hand blown off by an abandoned bomb yesterday.
Five-year-old Nahidul Islam Mahin of Rajshahi thought the red ball-like object on the ground was a toy.  

The crude bomb blew off his left hand from the wrist down, and splinters from the blast peppered his face.

Professor BK Dam, head of orthopaedic surgery at Rajshahi Medical College Hospital, where the child was taken, told our correspondent that the splinters have also damaged his eyes.

Mahin's right eye was bleeding profusely when our correspondent went to see the child.

Mahin, son of a domestic help, had been excited to find a red "toy" around 1:00pm, when he was playing with other children on the premises of an Awami League office in Upashahar New Market area. 

"I heard a sudden blast and rushed towards it," said Mohammad Milon, a shopkeeper who saw the child first after the blast. "We saw him writhing on the ground and yelling in pain.”

Mahin's grandfather hurried to the spot upon getting the news, and found him cradled in Milon's arms.

Contacted, Mustak Hossain, organising secretary of AL's Rajshahi city unit, said unknown pickets must have left the bomb there after the AL office was closed at midday.

Handmade bombs left this way by blockaders and pro-hartal supporters have been a worry for many parents with children who play outdoors.

Many people, especially children, do not know what a crude bomb looks like. In the last two months, at least 11 children have picked up bombs taking them for toys and thus lost limbs.   

Their parents are running up huge debts to pay for their treatment.

Three-year-old Lima, who had her hand blown away after picking up a cocktail earlier this month, has caused her garment worker mother to loan around half a lakh taka.

"It will be impossible for me to pay it back," said Sohagi, the mother.

Tofazzal Hossain, 11, lost three fingers in his right hand late last month, and is now undergoing treatment. His rickshaw-puller father has spent over Tk 60,000 so far.

The left hand of ten-year-old Murad lost its use after a crude bomb exploded in his hand two months ago. His father broke down in tears while speaking to this correspondent on the phone.

"I really need help. I am only a rickshaw-puller. I have borrowed so much money that I have lost count of it.... Yet my expenses are far from over, as Murad is still on medication. I have only received a donation of Tk 2,000 from a neighbour," said Jamal.

Similarly, the question remains how Mahin's mother Morjina Khatun, who has been deserted by her husband, will be able to foot the medical bills.  

 

Published: 1:13 am Sunday, December 22, 2013

Last modified: 8:08 pm Sunday, December 22, 2013

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