KOCHI: Several employees of Ernakulam Medical College Hospital were enjoying their day off with family when the MCH superintendent issued orders to report back for an emergency. At the hospital, they were greeted by a multitude of worried faces -- mostly of relatives of victims of the serial blasts at the Kalamassery convention centre.
Dolly, from Kaaliyar, Thodupuzha, had arrived to check on his wife, Gracy, who attended the prayer meeting. “My wife, her brother and his wife were in Kochi to attend the final day of the convention. I tried contacting them on hearing about the incident. My brother-in-law Jose updated me on the situation. The staff say Gracy’s condition is satisfactory. However, they are not permitting me to see her,” Dolly said, his eyes welling up. Jose and his wife, however, escaped injuries.
Laxman Prabhu, a native of Adimali, rushed to the hospital to enquire about his mother and her sister. “My mother, along with her sister, had arrived for the prayer on Saturday. My mother suffered burn injuries. I am worried as she has other ailments. But she is receiving good treatment. I hope she recovers soon,” said Laxman.
Among the large crowd of people gathered at the hospital were relatives, Jehovah’s Witnesses members, and neighbours, offering a helping hand by providing clothes, procuring medicines, etc. The coordination by hospital authorities, cooperation from private hospitals and leadership of the district administration, ministers, MLAs, and MPs helped manage the situation.