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regular-article-logo Wednesday, 24 July 2024

Body of engineer dead in the Kuwait fire tragedy reach his village in West Midnapore

Thousands gathered to pay their respect to the engineer who had been working in the West Asian country for the past 20 years

Anshuman Phadikar Tamluk Published 16.06.24, 09:33 AM
The body of worker Dwarikesh Pattanayak, who died in the Kuwait fire tragedy, being brought to Dantan village, West Midnapore, on Saturday

The body of worker Dwarikesh Pattanayak, who died in the Kuwait fire tragedy, being brought to Dantan village, West Midnapore, on Saturday PTI picture

The body of Dwarikesh Pattanayak, 52, an engineer who died in the Kuwait fire tragedy on June 12, reached his village in West Midnapore on Saturday afternoon.

Thousands gathered to pay their respect to the engineer who had been working in the West Asian country for the past 20 years.

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Dwarikesh was among the 49 people, of whom 45 were Indians, who died in a massive fire that broke out in a labour accommodation in Kuwait's Mangaf city. Twenty-four of them were from Kerala.

Dwarikesh's body arrived at the Calcutta airport from Delhi on Saturday morning, where Sujit Bose, the minister of state for fire and emergency services, and BJP MLA Agnimitra Paul paid their last respects.

Later, the body was taken to Midnapore town and finally Dantan in West Midnapore, where newly elected Medinipur MP June Malia paid her last respects.

Both Bose and Malia assured Dwarikesh's family that the state government would stand by them and extend them all possible assistance, including financial support.

Sayantan Pattanayak, the deceased's brother-in-law, said that Dwarikesh used to call his wife Antara before going to work every day. But the call did not come on Wednesday.

A worried Antara had then called up Dwarikesh, but the phone kept ringing and nobody picked it up. Antara then called up a colleague of Dwarikesh who hailed from Kerala, but came to know that the person was back in his home state.

"Some time later, the same colleague called us back and asked us to see the television news of the devastating fire in Kuwait. We spent an anxious night on Wednesday. On Thursday, a person from Dwarikesh's company called up to inform us that he was no more," said Sayantan.

He said that Dwarikesh was supposed to visit home in September for his daughter's birthday.

"We never thought he would come back home in a coffin like this," Sayantan added.

Relatives of Dwarikesh said that someone from Delhi had called up and informed the family that they would be given 2 lakh as compensation by the central government.

"But the family needs something more as Dwarikesh's daughter studies in Class XI. Dwarikesh was the sole breadwinner of the family. The Centre should come forward and help the family," said a relative, adding that the state government had promised all help to the family even though they had not been informed of any concrete plan so far.

BJP MLA Paul alleged that the lack of job opportunities in Bengal forced lakhs of people from the state like Dwarikesh to move out in search of a livelihood.

"So, the state should take responsibility and extend all possible support to the victim's family," said Paul.

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