TUMAKURU: When 60-year-old H S Narayana Rao died a sudden death at the sealed Zone-II here in the wee hours of Tuesday, his impoverished family of four, including his wife, two sons and a daughter, struggled to come to terms with the loss.
But a team of Muslim youths came to their rescue by presenting them Rs 5,000 to boost their morale and helping with the funeral arrangements.
As no relative could enter the zone, these youths shouldered the responsibility by turning into the bereaved family's temporary kin.
Although they too could not go outside the zone, they ensured that all the materials including flowers were brought through the area corporator, Nayaz Ahmed. With the help of the incident commander of the zone appointed by the administration, they got the hearse at the deceased person's place. Finally, the body was cremated with a few relatives taking part.
Since Rao was staying in the containment zone, his sample had been collected but it tested negative for COVID-19 four days ago.
Living in a rented house at the LIG area of KHB colony, the deceased had lost one of his limbs to diabetes. His 36-year-old son Puneeth had inherited his tailoring job but his earnings had dwindled. His other son Manjunath used to deliver milk at doorsteps but had stopped after the area was sealed. The daughter is studying in SSLC.
"As we knew they were in distress, we treated them as our family. Moreover, Manjunath used to supply milk to our children for years and had been on good terms with us," said Mohammed Khalid, a resident.
His friends Imran, Tippu, Sheru, Sharuq, Thofiq, Saad, Khatib and Mansoor joined hands with him to help the family in their time of need.