Bangalore: It has been almost a month since the Carlton Towers fire tragedy, which claimed nine lives. But memories of the February-23 horror, when people jumped to their deaths, and their own fight to keep themselves alive, still haunt the survivors.
Mahesh G, an office assistant with White Forest Law Office, now prefers to take the staircase in the buildings, even if he has to reach the ninth floor.
“I can’t remember what exactly happened that day,” he says. “But one thing is for sure: had I taken the lift that day, I wouldn’t be alive today. I managed to find my way out, braving the thick smoke only because I chose the staircase. On my way out, a glass fell on my leg injuring it.”
Mahesh was in Manipal Hospital for two days. His office shifted to Indiranagar after the tragedy.
Amit Bhatia was severely affected by acute respiratory distress syndrome after he inhaled the hot smoke coming from the fire. After undergoing treatment at Manipal Hospital for weeks, he has now gone to his home, in Delhi.
“He still has some problem with his voice and is finding it hard even to whisper,” says his friend Anand Raj.
“Doctors at the hospital have said his voice would come back within a week,” he says. “He is mentally very strong, but the fire has surely had an impact on him.”
Amit is thinking of joining work in 10 days, says Raj.
When DNA contacted Mamatha, who was on a life support system till a few days ago, she could barely speak.
“Doctors have told me that it would take three to six months for me to get back my normal voice,” she says. “I also have a problem digesting food. I vomit after having food,” she says.