24-year-old loses control of lower body after Dahi Handi pyramid crashes on top

Dahi Handi celebrations took a tragic turn for several Govindas who sustained serious injuries while performing daring feats on Thursday. As per the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), 107 injured Govindas visited various civic-run hospitals on Thursday out of which 14 had to be admitted. In total, 11 wounded revellers from the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) have been admitted to KEM hospital. On Friday, some of their relatives could be seen waiting anxiously outside the operation theatre. While three patients have already undergone surgery and will take six months to a year to recover, two others will take longer time to heal.

A 24-year-old bystander from Nalasopara fractured his neck after a human pyramid collapsed on him on the premises of his building on Thursday. He cannot move the lower half of his body and while he will undergo surgery at KEM hospital on Saturday, he may never improve neurologically. Doctors are hoping for 
a miracle.

“My brother works at a printing press. On Thursday, while he was cheering on an attempt to break the dahi handi, the pyramid came crashing down on him, damaging the bones of his neck,” said his sister. A 16-year-old boy, Vedant More, fractured his leg after he fell from the sixth level of a pyramid. An operation was carried out in KEM on Friday afternoon.

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Vedant passed the SSC exam this year and just joined an Industrial Training Institute. “College started last week. He went with a local Pathak (group) near Joshi High School in Dombivali East to break the dahi handi. He fell down around 10.30 pm,” said Vinayak More, the boy’s father.

One of Vedant’s friends said that they initially admitted him to a private hospital in Dombivli and then shifted him to KEM. Vinayak said that doctors assured him that he would recover after the operation.

The wife of an injured Govinda, Rajendra Kasurde, 40, said, “He attends the Dahi Handi event every year with the Kalachowkie Pathak. He was standing on the ground but could not bear the weight of the Govindas who fell on him. He cannot move his leg at the moment but doctors say there isn’t any need 
for an operation.”

Soham Pednekar, a Virar resident, was also injured while supporting climbers. “His spine got injured and he fractured his leg. The doctors sent him for an MRI. They will decide what to do after the report,” said one of his relatives.

Dr Mohan Desai, head of the KEM hospital’s orthopaedic ward, said, “Out of the 11 patients admitted, eight are in the orthopaedics department and three are in the general surgery department. Five orthopaedic patients needed surgery and three have undergone procedures. Two of them had hip fractures and one had a leg bone fracture. They will recover in the next six months to one year.  Two are spine patients and they will undergo surgery on Saturday.”

He added that the 24-year-old had lost muscle power of one hand and the entire body below the nipple level. “He is not critical but his chances of neurological recovery are very low. In the long run, the overall survival of this patient is very unlikely.”

No. of Govindas that had to be admitted 

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