Brave Red Chillies girl returns home
Jyoti Shelar (MUMBAI MIRROR; June 30, 2012)
Around 8 pm Friday, Charu Khandal was wheeled into a rented ground-floor apartment at Seven Bungalows, Andheri that her family had shifted into just an hour earlier. After spending 97 days in the hospital strapped to tubes and medical contraptions, she was laughing, speaking, whistling, making faces, unable to believe she’s home.
Charu’s family members, extremely proud of their girl’s “doughty-spirit”, were unable to control their tears when the 28-year-old — employed with Shah Rukh Khan’s Red Chillies Entertainment — was brought out of Kokilaben Ambani Hospital at Andheri in the evening. She is paralysed neck down; complete recovery is still a long way away, but her survival itself is nothing short of a miracle considering her condition on March 25, when an autorickshaw she was travelling in with her sister Ritu and a friend, Vikrant Goyal, was hit by a speeding Honda City at Oshiwara. The car driver, identified as Manoj Netrapal alias Gautam, 39, was drunk, according to the police.
Charu, who was returning home to Lokhandwala after the team she headed won a National Award for the special effects in Ra.One, suffered severe injuries to her spine. Doctors gave her a very low chance of survival, while Netrapal was let off on a surety of Rs 10,000. He has not been re-arrested.
Now, the doctors say she will stand up on her feet, maybe after a year, two years, even five years. A little movement in her left shoulder has given the doctors a lot of hope, and Charu will undergo rigorous physiotherapy at the hospital, which is barely 10 minutes from her new accommodation. Her sister Ritu, who escaped with bruises in the March 25 accident, told Mumbai Mirror, “On Charu’s behalf, we distributed chocolates to the hospital staff and other patients. She told me that she wanted to gift them something sweet.” The family shifted out of their home in Malad to ensure Charu doesn’t spend too much time commuting to the hospital. The Seven Bungalows apartment has been turned into a mini hospital, with a lot of attention to detail. “Even the hand sanitiser gel is the same that was used in the hospital,” Ritu said.
Like all patients battling for life, Charu had two choices: give up, or fight on. After battling on for more than a month, Charu muttered her first words on May 1, suggesting that the hospital set up a garden on every floor. She had also instructed that her plants at home should be regularly watered. With her family and fiancé Sagar Thackar by her side, Charu recovered enough for the doctors to remove the tracheotomy tube, which was used to facilitate her breathing.
Her love for plants prompted the family to choose the Seven Bungalows apartment, Ritu said. “Her room faces a garden. She’s always loved the greenery, and was quite excited to see the garden,” Ritu said, adding that her sister is in considerable pain, but cheerful nevertheless.
There hasn’t been any recent communication from Shah Rukh Khan, the family said. The actor had visited Charu at the hospital a few days after the accident, and had provided the family with financial assistance. Her doctor Abhishek Srivastava, who specialises in neurological rehabilitation, said Charu was medically stable, hence allowed to go home. “Her rehabilitation will continue. The aim is to provide her maximum possible level of functional independence,” he said.
The doctor said Charu’s spinal cord injury was serious, but she will be trained to maximise her movements. “Till a few weeks ago, she was lying on the bed. Now, she is able to sit straight. It may take a few years, but recovery is possible,” Dr Srivastava said.
- Celebrated lensman Jagdish Mali passes away
- Aamir Khan to join B-Town’s famous games night?
- SRK makes Kamal Haasan copy do the Chammak Challo dance step?
- Shoulder injuries plague Aamir and Shah Rukh
- Shah Rukh Khan charges Rs 8 cr for a 30-minute jig in Dubai?
- Race against time: SRK doesn’t let Deepika go for world tour with Ranbir?
- Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge voted favourite film in 100 years
- Aamir Khan lets Shah Rukh Khan enjoy the spotlight?
- Bollywood goes Yamla Pagla Deewana
- Ayushmann Khurrana behaving like Shah Rukh Khan?