Srinagar: Dr Abdul Gani Khan had quietly retired to his residential quarter after a distressing day attending to people injured in a clash with security forces during an encounter in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama district. No sooner had he reached his residence, Khan received a call to urgently return to the district hospital in Pulwama.
Little did he know who he was to attend to. He had seen so much blood and suffering through the day it seemed impossible for him to comprehend the situation.
When he reached the hospital building, he was informed his son had died in the clash and the body was brought to the hospital.
Faizan Ahmad Khan, 16, was among the people injured in the clash between stone-pelters and security forces during the encounter with terrorists in Thamuna village on Friday. He was rushed to a hospital in Rajpora in critical condition but doctors there feared he would not survive and referred him to the district hospital, where his father practices.
"Doctors at the Rajpora hospital informed us after they recognized Faizan. They also told us he might not make it (to the district hospital)," Dr Rashid Parra, medical superintendent of the district hospital, said.
"We tried our best to revive him when he was brought to the district hospital, but unfortunately there were no signs of life in him," Parra said.
It was then that Parra and other hospital staffers decided to call Khan from his residential quarter. "Faizan was born at this hospital and spent his childhood in the hospital campus. We called Khan without telling him about his son and then kept him in a room as we wrapped Faizan's body in a shroud," Parra said.
Surrounded by his colleagues at the hospital, Khan was informed about his son's death. They consoled Khan but it was unlikely that it would have helped in reducing his pain. "He went to the casualty ward to see his son and broke down instantly. We all were in tears...," the medical superintendent said.
"Fate had brought Faizan to the same hospital to be declared dead where he was born," he added.
Faizan's body was later taken to his ancestral home in Ladoo village of the district for last rites.
A Lashkar-e-Toiba terrorist was killed during the encounter in Thamuna village on Friday. Police said on Saturday that initial reports had suggested three terrorists were killed but two of them apparently escaped during the security operation.