| Policemen cover their ears during the bomb blast at Patna Junction on October 27, 2013. Telegraph picture |
Dharamnath Yadav, a 44-year-old porter admitted to Patna Medical College and Hospital with assault injuries, is no ordinary patient but a forgotten hero.
The porter, with badge number 31, had caught Imtiaz, an Indian Mujahideen operative, after a bomb had gone off at Patna Junction during last year’s Hunkar Rally. Beaten up by seven and odd men in the early hours of Monday, he is yet to be assigned a bed at the health cradle in the city.
By his own admission, his act of bravery has been forgotten and his demand for security ignored.
Sweating profusely, he told The Telegraph on Tuesday: “I have been asking for security from the administration for a long time. In the early hours of Monday when I was deep asleep at the railway station, someone asked me to go to platform number 10. I was not in my full senses and thought it was a friend who woke me, so I went ahead. The platform was almost empty and before I could understand anything else, six to seven men pounced upon me. I was kicked and punched for around 10 minutes after which they left me in a semi-conscious state. After a while, I regained my senses and dragged myself to the resting room meant for porters. I woke up some of my colleagues and they rushed me to the Patna Medical College and Hospital immediately.”
“Since Monday morning, I have been kept at the Rajendra surgical block. I am being told beds are unavailable. The ceiling fans do not work properly and I am worried about the heat. My son is with me now, but I cannot stay like this. The ward has so many patients that it is difficult to even breathe. I have not been treated well by anyone, no one recognised my bravery. This is not the way to treat anyone,” he lamented.
On October 27 last year, the Ara resident had caught hold of Imtiaz when he was getting ready in a public lavatory near platform number 10 to strike at Hunkar Rally.
The hospital administration plead helplessness about the lack of beds.
Patna Medical College and Hospital superintendent Lakhendra Prasad said: “The hospital is dealing with an extra load of patients because of which we cannot provide beds to everyone. Even if I am admitted in the hospital, there is no surety of getting one. Wards with a capacity to accommodate 100 patients are filled with 400 people. It has become difficult for us. As far as Dharamnath is concerned, I have asked the health manager to provide him a bed. When we get a vacant bed in the ward, he would be shifted there.”
Looking into the case, an officer at the Government Railway Police station at Patna Junction said an FIR has been lodged. “Police are investigating the case. It looks to be a brawl. There might have been some disagreement and the men fought. No one has been arrested yet,” the officer said.