Thursday, 27 October 2016

Girl Dies On Her 23rd Birthday in Hospital Sultanah Aminah ICU Fire

My heart froze, my girl died on her birthday, says driver

K. Muniandy (left) and S. Muniama saying their final goodbye to their daughter Kaliama at their home in Kangkar Pulai.

JOHOR BARU: Bus driver K. Muniandy was on a bus stuck in a traffic jam when he got a call from his wife telling him that the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) where his child was warded at had caught fire.

“I instantly went into panic mode but I could only wait anxiously as our bus was caught in a jam that I presumed was related to the fire,” said the 49-year-old who had been taking a city bus from Masai where he works to Hospital Sultanah Aminah to visit his daughter Kaliama, 23, every day.

Kaliama was admitted there on Oct 20 following an epileptic seizure.

“I was halfway through the usual one-hour journey when my wife called at about 9.15am on Tuesday to inform me about the fire.

“She told me she was on the ground floor and was barred from going into the building,” he said when met at his home at Merak A5 Flat in Jalan Pulai Harmoni 1, Kangkar Pulai here yesterday.

Muniandy said he only arrived at the hospital at 10.45am and rushed from block to block to look for his daughter in the hope of finding her safely transferred out of the burning ward.

A nurse then led him to the board where the names of the deceased and injured patients were listed.

“My heart froze as I saw Kaliama’s name there,” he said, wiping away tears.

The last time he saw her daughter was a day before the tragedy but she was sedated.

The father-of-two said Kaliama, who enjoyed going to shopping malls and listening to Tamil songs, had already bought new clothes and shoes for Deepavali.

“She was very close to her eight-year-old brother Haresh and he still thinks his sister is asleep.

“We do not have the heart to tell him what happened. He is too young to understand,” he said, adding that it would be a dark Deepavali for the family this year.

Incidentally, the young woman died on the day she was to turn 23.

She was given the final goodbye by family and friends at her home where her mother S. Muniama, 42, was seen sobbing while holding the photo of her only daughter as the funeral rites were carried out yesterday afternoon.

Her body was cremated at the Hindu crematorium in Kebun Teh and her ashes will be scattered at Lido Beach today.

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