12-year-old escapes, but loses his father in Makochi, Idukki

Abin's father Shaji Chirayil fell into the Pullakayar river while trying to save him as the family was trying to reach higher ground.

Published: 18th October 2021 02:47 AM  |   Last Updated: 18th October 2021 02:47 AM   |  A+A-

Abin Shaji, who escaped after falling into the Kokkayar river

Abin Shaji, who escaped after falling into the Kokkayar river. (Photo | EPS)

Express News Service

KOCHI:  One could not read the emotions on the face of 12-year-old Abin Shaji who escaped miraculously after being caught in the massive landslide that occurred at Makochi in Kokkayar. Is it the shock that he had gone through or is it the grief after hearing the news of his missing father, 55-year-old Shaji Chirayil?

His father Shaji fell into the overflowing Pullakayar river while trying to Abin. After noticing the rising water level in the river following the torrential rain, Shaji along with his wife and son was trying to shift their belongings around 11 am on Saturday. 

“It was when the couple came outside with some of the belongings, they noticed that their son was still staying near the river. Shaji ran and tried to save him but both the father and son were thrown into the river by the gushing mud and water following the landslide. The condition of the river was scary. However, Abin somehow managed to reach the shore,” said local resident Sashi. The couple’s elder son, Justin, was in Kochi as part of his job.

Since his childhood, Abin knew how to swim as the Pullakayar river flows beside their house.  “I was scared. However, I tried my best to reach the shore by swimming quickly,” said Abin, a seventh-standard student. He sustained a fracture in his right leg. 


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