Suraj and his father, rescuers who ran across the bridge with Suraj in 2018 flood (Photo: G Sivaprasad| Mathrubhumi)
Thodupuzha: A photograph of the 2018 flood in which a disaster response team member was seen running across Cheruthoni bridge carrying a boy in his hand before the gushing waters from the dam engulfed the bridge, had frozen everyone. The boy was suffering from fever and was asleep when the flood hit the region, so he could not see the sight. After 3 years, the boy, Sooraj, who is six years old now has came again with his father Vijayaraj to the spot to see the same sight again.
When the dam opened on Tuesday, Sooraj asked his father that he wanted to see it. This time too he had a fever. Though the father was scared of taking the boy near the bridge, he had to surrender to his son’s will.
When Vijayaraj reached home after seeing the dam being opened on August 10 in 2018, he saw his son suffering from severe fever and breathing trouble. So, he went out carrying the ailing son to the doctor.
The police stopped him near the bridge as it was dangerous to cross it at that time. However, he could convince the police that his son needed immediate treatment. The police informed this to the rescue team located at the other side of the bridge.
The disaster relief force ran to them and within seconds they crossed the bridge with the kid. The bridge submerged in water by the time they got into an autorickshaw with the child. The father still remembers a police officer who gave him money when he did not have a single rupee with him.
Though Sooraj does not know that he played a key role in letting the world know the intensity of flood years back, he was happy that he could see the water flowing from the opened dam shutters this time.