PURI: For Amrit Kujur, the man from Andaman who survived at sea for 28 days before his boat washed ashore near Khirisahi village along Chilika coast on October 22, this was his fifth encounter with nature at its core elements.Amrit was brought to Puri for medical examination on Sunday. Recounting his harrowing experience in face of a certain death, he said all he did was to pray God to save him during the devastating moments in the sea. “Unsure of where I was heading, I left my boat at the mercy of the almighty,” he said.
Doctors at Puri checked his health condition and found him fit to travel to his native place Sahid Dweep at Andaman and Nicobar Islands. He was put in a shelter home under the care of the district administration.
Claiming that this was his fourth encounter with death, the 42-year-old man, a devoted Christian, promised not to venture into sea again. He expressed his gratitude to locals of Khirisahi who gave him food, water, clothes and shelter till police reached the village.
After regaining his composure, he first contacted his wife Salma from a villager’s mobile phone and informed her about his presence in Khirisahi and death of his colleague Ranjan Biswas due to starvation in the sea. Amrit said he also talked to the parents of Ranjan over mobile phone. “I had to throw Ranjan’s body into sea as it began decomposing after a few days,” he said.
“Both of us were employees of Seth C Pandiyan of Sahid Dweep and sold consumer goods to people residing in nearby islands. We also sold rice, edible oils and spices to ships anchored in the sea,” he said. They got their supplies from Port Blair. This time, they had goods worth `5 lakh and a new scooter in their boat. However, they had throw these into water to lighten the boat after being caught in the rough sea. The boat has been damaged beyond repair, he said. He further said his wife had booked a flight ticket for him but he is yet to receive it.
Amrit and Ranjan ran into the storm on September 28, the very day they set out from Andaman to conduct their trade in the Indian Ocean. He was, however, unsure about the exact date of the second storm. Amrit claimed that during his 28-day ordeal, he drank only saltwater and survived. Krushna Prasad police have informed their counterparts in Andaman about the safe arrival of Amrit in Puri.