Sunday, July 6, 2014

"Death was so close to us"

"All the buildings around the hospital were bombed by insurgents,The mortuary in the hospital was also demolished in an explosion," she said. "All we could see out of the hospital window was smoke and fire"

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Now that the nurses are safe home there is still the problem of the 3Lakh loan which needs to be paid off. Also there are no jobs in sight. The govt has promised an AIIMS like medical college in every state (why has this taken 65 long years?). Faster please....

Our (useless) advice, cut back on (useless) defense items (allow the USA to have permanent bases in exchange for border protection, if Pakistan can be a non-NATO ally, why not India?) and build more hospitals with the savings.

India probably needs ten times the number of doctors and nurses than what we have now, and the medical profession (in our opinion) benefits the society much more than an MBA-manager or a pilot (just to name a few "dream" professions).
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P Lesima Jerose Monisha (25), a Tuticorin-based nurse, is back home from Iraq, relieved and happy. "I will never go back," she said on Saturday, though she has to now find ways to repay the loan of 3 lakh she took for studying nursing.


"Every day, we would hear at least 50 to 60 bomb explosions in the proximity of hospital where we were held. Barely 30 minutes after we were evacuated from the hospital in Tikrit, the building was bombed," she said on Saturday.

Monisha was one among the 46 Indian nurses released by ISIS insurgents in Iraq. She reached Kochi along with other nurses on Saturday morning in a special flight and arrived at Tuticorin later in the day.

"We did not know what was happening around us. It was our family members who kept updating us about the developments in Iraq," Monisha told TOI over phone on her way to Tuticorin. Certain that their lives were at risk, the nurses kept awake most of the days.

Though the insurgents assured them they would not be harmed, there was always a fear that a bomb would land on the hospital, she said.

She said the scariest moment was when the militants gave them just two hours to get ready and leave the hospital on July 2. "Indian embassy officials told us over phone to follow the gunmen's instructions for our own safety." Monisha said they were taken in a bus to Mosul where they were detained in a jail-like building.  


Finally on Friday they were once again told to pack up their belongings and board a bus. "Only then we realized we are being released. The insurgents released us on the outskirts of Mosul from where Indian embassy officials took care of us," she said.

Three days after ISIS insurgents reached Tikrit, they took control of the hospital and held 46 Indian nurses captive. Since then, the nurses were not allowed to leave the hospital, but were permitted to speak to relatives and Indian embassy officials over phone.  
  "They did not harm us. We were provided food and water," she said. The armed militants had insisted that the nurses treat the injured insurgents. But the nurses refused.

"One moment there would be hope and the next moment despair. Death was so close to us," she said. "All the buildings around the hospital were bombed by insurgents,The mortuary in the hospital was also demolished in an explosion," she said. "All we could see out of the hospital window was smoke and fire".

Her mother P Edvija Ammal, 65, was overjoyed to see her daughter. "Our prayers have been answered," she said. Monisha, youngest in the family, completed her nursing in Bangalore two years ago. After working in New Delhi for eight months, she left for Iraq on February 17.

"Apart from the 5,000 financial assistance given by the Kerala government to all nurses, chief minister Oomen Chandy has directed that Monisha's family be given an additional 7,000 towards taxi fare from Kochi to Tuticorin," said Hari P Nair, a NORKA (Non-Resident Keralites Affairs) official.



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Link: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Nurse-relives-Iraq-horror-says-death-was-so-close-to-us/articleshow/37868625.cms

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regards