FOUR YEARS DOWN THE LINE, GIRL LIVES WITH BLAST NIGHTMARE

At first sight she looks like any other healthy, normal girl, but this fifteen-year-old girl, a victim of Pourabi blast in 2007, has been living with shrapnel that need to be operated.

Wahengbam Bembem (15) daughter of W Pakpa of Keibi Heikak Mapan was injured in the Pourabi blast that occurred on December 16, 2007 when a bomb planted in the middle of the road exploded and ripped through the bus in which she was travelling. The incident claimed eight lives and injured more than 30 people.

Four years have passed, yet left with no other option, the girl has carried the shrapnel on her right leg.

“I feel more pain at the thought of putting more pressure on my family members for my impending operation. I prefer to endure the physical pain instead of giving additional burden to my parents,” Bembem thinks.

Soft spoken, Bembem recounted the fateful day when she and some of her friends from school went for a painting competition at the Imphal Art College, but she ended up at a hospital, bed ridden for 4 months.

Bembem was a kho-kho player with a brilliant academic record.

The blast incident has shattered all her dreams of becoming an uniformed officer.

She received severe injuries on her right leg, left ankle, hip and right eye. An iron clad has been fixed on her right femur to connect the fractured bones.

Other than getting Rs 15,000 as an assistance to the injured victims the Government and Rs 18,000 from the helpline unit of RIMS, she did not receive other assistance.

Since physically impaired, she has to bear the hardship. But that does not deter her from performing household chores as an eldest girl of the family and her education without any compromise.

“We have to talk to her teachers at school for her physical adjustment during classes or in any other activities,” Wahengbam Pakpa, father of Bembem said.

He added, “I have no means whatever to finance her further operation.”

The irony is that the doctors had refused to certify that she is physically handicapped.

The family members have also lately learnt discrepencies in the duration of hospitalisation period in the discharge certificate given by the RIMS authority, where she was treated.

Seeing a bleak future, Bembem, who was a candidate of this year's HSLC examination from Eternal Spring School, Sekta, chooses to be contented with whatever is in store for her.

"I don't think that I will recover fully from these injuries", Bebem said with tearful eyes.

Holding both the Government and UG responsible for the occurrence of the incident, Bembem expressed her desire for removal of all security forces in the State.

With tears in her eyes, she appealed all concerned individuals, groups, organisations not to cause pain and sorrow to others.

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