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News18 » India
3-min read

A Devastated Family, a Blood-Soaked Shirt, and a Man Waiting With Bullet Injuries: Horror at GTB Hospital

Old Mustafabad residents Afzal and his friend Yusuf were beaten and survived within inches of death. Their fault? They truthfully answered when a violent mob asked them which faith they belonged to.

Shivansh Sharma, Suhas Munshi

Updated:February 26, 2020, 12:33 PM IST
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A Devastated Family, a Blood-Soaked Shirt, and a Man Waiting With Bullet Injuries: Horror at GTB Hospital
A man injured in Delhi violence being rushed to GTB Hospital. (News18)

Delhi: Afsar Khan was barely able to hold himself together. Just four hours earlier, his son-in-law was shot in the ongoing communal riots in Delhi. His friends had brought the blood-soaked body of Mohammed Ashfaq. Within minutes of being brought to the GTB Hospital, Ashfaq was declared dead.

"He was only 28-years-old. He has two little children, a 3-year-old son and a 4-year-old girl. What will happen to his family now? Politicians who fanned the communal flames have done their job, as you can see. What have we been left with in all this madness?" Afsar Khan asked.

Ashfaq was shot in Kardam Puri near a cemetery at around 12:30 in the afternoon.

But the ordeal for Afsar Khan and his family did not end there. Since Ashfaq was declared dead, Afsar Khan had been waiting at the hospital to collect his son-in-law's body. But he had to wait for a day in the hospital.

"We can’t get back to our home because the situation near our house is not good, the rioters won’t spare us. This night, we will be staying here in the hospital and tomorrow we will collect the body and will later perform his last rites."

There was more bad news to come for this family. Afsar's elder brother and his son who had rushed to the hospital on hearing about Ashfaq's death were attacked on the way by rioters near Loni area.

When Afsar Khan's nephew, accompanied by his father, came in with his head bandaged, the Khan family broke down in tears.

Sunny Thakur, who identified himself as a supporter of the Citizenship Amendment Act, had brought a person with a bullet wound to the hospital. Sunny, wearing a shirt drenched in blood, did not know the identity of the person he had just got admitted at GTB hospital.

"He is a fellow Hindu is all I know. That's enough for me. We were protecting our Shiv temple from anti-CAA protesters and have gathered around it. The agitators opened fired on us and in that firing our fellow Hindu got hurt,” he claimed.

Throughout the day, many people with serious injuries were brought to the hospital's emergency ward on motorcycles, cars, ambulances and auto-rickshaws. Some were declared dead immediately, others were being attended to in emergency wards buzzing with visitors and doctors.

The GTB hospital has been seeing an increasing number of injured and dead being brought in since it is the biggest government hospital in northeast Delhi which is currently in the grip of intense communal violence.

Old Mustafabad residents Afzal and his friend Yusuf were beaten and survived within inches of death in Johripur near Karawal Nagar. Their fault? They truthfully answered when a violent mob asked them which faith they belonged to.

Afzal suffered severe injuries on his leg, arm, head and his back. He received two stitches on the head, three on his arm and two on his leg. The blood on his body had still not dried completely.

“We both (Afzal and Yusuf) were going to collect payment from someone, but on our way, we were caught by a group of people in Johripur. They asked us our name and after knowing our name, they started beating us. We were beaten with iron and steel rods,” Afzal said.

“The police came on time and saved us from the rioters, otherwise they wouldn’t have spared us. We told our family, but they couldn’t come because of the violence,” Yusuf said.

Many injured in the violence, belonging to different communities, were being brought to the GTB hospital till late in the evening. The flow of ambulances, carrying the injured as well as the dead, from sites of communal violence to the hospital was continuous.

One of the people who was brought in on Tuesday evening was 21-year-old Shahrukh. He was lying outside the hospital on a stretcher, with multiple bullet injuries, on his hand and on his back. He was shot in the Kabir Nagar area. He said he was returning after buying milk from the nearby shop.

"Some people carrying guns fired at us. I called my friend and he took me to the hospital in his car as there was no ambulance available," Shahrukh said.

He was waiting, possibly with a bullet still in his body, for an ambulance to take him to another hospital for a CT scan since this facility was not available at GTB hospital.

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