Sunday, April 18, 2010

Two lives

Yesterday while coming back from my cousin’s place near the airport, we saw a small congregation of people in the middle of the street. Craning my neck to get a better view, I saw a young man, wearing a white shirt and dark trousers, lying unconscious in the middle of the road. A mob of people had gathered around him. I wondered who was it driving who had hit the man, left him on the streets and had taken off. My cousin remarked about the sorry state of things, where the mob, if sufficiently angered and provoked, would target the nearby vehicle and set fire on it. Needlessly to say, my cousin didn’t risk stopping, or offering the person to be taken to the nearby hospital. There was no point in risking our safety, and the police and the ambulance would take care of things.

A few miles down that accident spot, we took a turn into a narrow bylane. There was barely any room for 2 cars to squish in, and there was a cab in the opposite direction. That cab tried swerving a little to the left, and in the process, injured a sleeping dog. The dog wailed and cried and ran away from the spot, limping. It would probably not die, but would live with a nice foot injury for the rest of its life. I tried taking a better look at the cab driver, and all I saw was a very emotionless expression on his face as he sped past.

As a bystander of both the incidents, I was slightly shaken, and left wondering about many a things. First, I did not get off the car in either situation and tried helping the victims. I just quietly left the spot. And then, I was appalled at the way someone had injured the man and an animal and had left the spot without any remorse. The injured man must have been on his way to somewhere or from somewhere. The dog must have been dreaming, in the middle of slumber.

I do not want to deviate the topic to how if this was the US, someone would have dialed 911 and help would be on its way. Moreover no dogs or cats or animals would be lying unattended on the streets. I am thinking things strictly from the humanitarian perspective. Why was someone careless enough to injure a man? Why was the man on the streets in the very first place? Why did I not ask my cousin to stop and offer help? How is the man doing today? Why did the cab driver choose not to see the dog? Is the dog still in pain? And most importantly, how do I know that tomorrow, either I or someone close to me will not face the fate either of them faced, being injured and unattended on the streets by someone careless?

I shudder, even thinking of the consequences. May the man and the dog, both be out of pain and get well soon. Provided they are not already dead.