It was around 9PM. The night was a bit more darker that day. I got down from my train at Chennai Fort railway station as always. It was my routine traveling each day from home to Office and then back from office to Home via the local trains. Local trains are the cheapest means of transport to travel here inside the city. It just costs only 10 rupees from Chennai beach to Tiruvanmiyur. My Home is in Tiruvottiyur. I Travel by bus from Tiruvottiyur to Chennai beach. And then from Chennai beach to Tiruvanmiyur via the trains and again from Tiruvanmiyur to Shollinganalur in one more bus. It is exactly the same while returning back except that I get down at Chennai Fort which is one stop before the Chennai beach. I prefer getting down here since the Broadway bus depot is nearby. And the bus to Tiruvottiyur actually starts here. It will be too crowded if I get into it at Chennai beach. There was a day when it was so crowded that I had to foot board. It could have been one of a tragic day of my life. I was nearly hanging from the last step with one leg on the footsteps and one leg in the air. My leg was dangling very nearer to the rear wheel of the bus. I was not sure how but suddenly my hand slipped from where I was holding. I almost tripped down. But a hand caught me and lifted me before I fell. If it was not for that hand, I would not be here now. That was a hand of a hero. The hero who saved me. I have not seen the face of that hand since people around me started shouting at me for nearly falling down. I just got down at the next stop and took an auto from there to home. But if I had seen that face of the hand, I would have thanked him a lot. That feel of missing to thank him always runs in my mind. But I could not find him right, I don’t even know who he is. The only thing I know about him was that he had a black casio watch and a roaring lion tattoo in his right hand near the wrists. Okay, Let’s leave that flashback there.
Okay, so now I got down the train and walked towards the exit of the railway station. Since it was night time, asusual the road was empty. So, I preferred to cross the road instead of walking over the over head sky walk. I reached the road, then started walking across it. When I reached the center of the road near the divider. I was standing exactly at a point where the vehicles behind me would navigate towards Chennai central and the vehicles before me will navigate towards Chennai Beach. I was so tired as usual that day. I was thinking about how exhausted my life has become. Nowadays I barely sleep like 5 hours. I travel, travel, travel everyday and every night. I was thinking about how robotic the life has become these days. Not only me many people have become robotic nowadays. I was thinking if I am really doing something meaningful for myself or for the society. From my childhood, doing some meaningful work and getting to know the benefit of my work in front of my eyes was all I wanted. I want my work to be something which will make people happy or atleast there should be a constant need for my work always. I started crossing the next half of the road. When I kept my first leg onto that half, Suddenly I heard a loud noise. The Noise of a woman screaming, the noise of the tire scratching the road and the noise of a bike crashing. It came from the left side of me. I looked at that direction. Something horrible happened in just less than a minute. There I saw a woman who was lying on the road with blood oozing out of her head, arms and everywhere of her body. And a Scooty bike which was lying near a lamp post crashed so hard that the front portion of it got bent in a nasty way. And also a pulsar bike in which two guys were sitting and which was skidding off the road. The guy sitting at the front was riding the bike and the guy at the back was holding something in his hands. I looked closer. There was a golden chain in his left hand which can be a chain holding mangalsutra and also a killer knife in his right hand. The bike whizzed past me in a hand distance. And the guy at the back winked at me and gave a wicked smile towards me. I don’t know which way to run first towards the pulsar or towards the lady. I was completely blank. I just stood there for sometime stunned by what just happened in front of my eyes. I should have ran behind that pulsar. But the knife he had, made me doubt of doing that. It can affect me. It can affect my life. Those guys may hurt me. There is also a chance that I can get killed. But I should catch them. I should surrender them to police. This incident should not repeat again. Lot were running inside me within the minute. If I run towards the lady, these culprits would get away. If I run towards the culprits, this lady could not be saved. What should I do. What Should I do. Don’t think! Just Run! Ravi Run! And I ran towards the lady by instinct.
When I ran near her. I found that she was still breathing. Within a minute people started gathering around. When I went to lift her, someone said , “don’t touch the body, call the police first”. I could not find where those words came from the crowd. Otherwise I would have slapped the one who said that. I ran to the road and stopped an auto. I ran to her again and lifted her and placed her in the back seat of the auto and said, “Anna G.H na, fast na”. Auto drivers are the best people in case of emergencies. If I had called 108. I know it would take at least 15 minutes for it to reach since I have to call and a lot other things are there. But She did not have that much time left. Rajiv Gandhi government hospital was just nearby in the next lane opposite to Chennai Central. Auto driver reached hospital in less than 2 minutes. I lifted her and ran inside the Hospital. I called a nurse and asked her to help her admit in the Hospital. But She was so lethargic. She asked me to wait. It took another 10 minutes for admitting her in the emergency trauma ward. They asked me to call for the police before starting the procedure. I called 100 and informed what had happened. They reached in another 10 minutes. I was not sure who her family was. All her belongings are still in the Scooty I guess. I did not care about that now. Saving her was the only thing that was running in my mind. It was around 9.30 PM now. And after some inquiries, the operation procedure started. I guess police has found her identity and informed her family about her.
Police took me to the Spot and inquired me about what had happened. I said, “I was there standing on the zebra crossing exactly in the position where the divider is. I was about to cross the road when two men in a pulsar bike whizzed past me. The One in the front was riding the bike and the one at the back was having something in both hands. In the left hand he had a gold chain and in the right hand he had a killer knife. He had that wicked smile on his face. The one at the front was wearing Helmet, so I was not sure how his face looked. But the one at the back, he was tall may be 6 feet and beardless, he had a long hair and also wicked smile. That Smile! That Smile! He was saying something with that Smile”. This is all I saw in a minute of the incident. I guess the lady was driving her scooty and these two men chased her at the back in their pulsar. And the one at the back snatched her chain which made her bike to skid. She fell from the bike hardly on the road and the bike crashed the nearby lamp post. This is what I assume. Police asked me to register a written statement about this and also give details on the appearance of the both guys along with their bike details in the nearby police station and said me that they will take care of this from here. I was absolutely blank about the bike details, I knew it was a pulsar but I forgot to note the registration number.
I rushed to the hospital again and to the emergency trauma ward. The family of that lady was there and they were all discussing with each other on something. I was relieved once I saw her family there. I went near them to ask about her condition. When I went nearby I saw that a grown man may be her husband I guess, he was crying hard sitting on one of the metal row of seats nearby the ICU. 2 kids may be her kids, one may be 8 years of age and the other may be of 6 years of age were running around playing run and catch. When I went closer, I heard this sentence from someone that froze me to hell, “Inform all the relatives that she is no more”. Someone else said, “I don’t know how he is going to manage growing up these kids without her. May be it was written for her to leave him alone and go at this young age.”. I just can’t bear to hear anything more than that. I ran away from that place with tears flowing down like a river from my eyes. That felt like a heated iron rod stabbed directly into my heart. I felt that pain even though she was not someone who I know. I just ran out of the hospital and onto the road just like that without checking if any vehicles are coming towards me. When I stepped on to the road, suddenly I got slipped since my leg landed on some small stone that was there. I fell on road with my face facing downwards. The tyres of the bus that was coming at a high speed just crossed my face at a distance less than a feet. The hot air from the tyres scratched my face. I got up and just ran before someone would scold me, without looking at any side, towards the bus stand in the central station.
There I saw 1C bus and got into it. It was sparse in crowd since it was around 11 PM now. I sat in the last seat of the bus even though it was mentioned only ladies. I just cried and cried and cried looking outside the window. When the bus crossed the murder spot nearby the Chennai fort. I saw the scooty was still there and also a police vehicle nearby. Also I saw someone standing nearby to the Scooty. It was him. The one who was sitting in the backside of the bike. The one who winked and also gave me a wicked smile. I shouted, “Hey Stop ! Stop!Don’t Run! Don’t Run. He winked at me with that wicked smile again. I got down from the running bus just like that without thinking what I am doing. I found that only the police vehicle was there. But Police were not. He started running, inside the Broadway bus depot. I ran behind him without thinking about anything. It was nearly a empty Depot at around 11.15 PM. When I almost ran him down, he jumped and sat on to the pulsar that was nearby. And there the other one was sitting in the front of the bike still with the helmet and they drove off at a high speed. I threw a stone towards them, but it missed. I kicked the ground in dismay. That guy at the back turned back looked at me and winked with a wicked smile. I screamed on the road. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhh !!!!!!
A thought came now into my mind. Did I make a wrong decision? Should I have gone for the pulsar in the first place? Was she dead even before we took her to the hospital? Is that why someone called her a body? No I remember her having breath. Why did that murderer winked and smiled at me? Why is he repeating it again and again? What was he trying to tell me? Do they do such assaults to people on the road everyday? Why did he come back to the same spot again? Where did the police go? Did he leave something before for which he came back? Is this some random assault or a planned murder? A lot were running inside me. I walked back to the murder spot opposite to the Chennai Fort. Now even, the Police vehicle was also not there at the spot. I looked around for the Scooty. Even that was not there. I thought maybe the police have seized the Scooty to a nearby police station. I thought of informing them about what happened, the first thing in the morning. My Phone beeped. It was my Mom. I picked and said, “On the way ma” and had cut the call. I got into a bus that was coming towards me, again sat at the last seat. Oh no!, I should have ran behind that pulsar? And I remembered something. Oh no! What was the Vehicle registration Number? I remember it started with TN05 but after that. I concentrated on those guys and I missed to note the Vehicle number again. I slapped my hand on the seat I was sitting, screaming hard again. People in the bus turned and looked at me. I said Sorry and turned towards the window again. I bought a ticket to Tiruvottiyur from the conductor and laid myself down on the empty last seat of the bus.
Just a lot of questions were running inside me. When the bus reached Tiruvottiyur, I got down and walked towards my home. In a shop nearby, I bought a water bottle and washed my face with it and also drank some water from it. When I entered home, Mom asked, “What happened? Why are you so late?”. I said, “Train was late and the bus was so crowded so It became late to reach. I said her, I ate already and I went inside and had laid myself in my bed. But I could not sleep, “That wink and wicked smile of that murderer who was sitting at the back of the bike was still flashing in my mind continuously”. I turned all the sides over my bed but I could not sleep. At last I gave up and just concentrated looking at my ceiling and the fan. Then I realized, “May be he made that wink and wicked smile at me because I was actually there on that spot when the incident happened but I could not stop him from doing that and also he knew that I will not run towards him instead I will go towards that lady”. I felt suddenly ashamed of me for catching hold of him not once but twice. I screamed inside myself. But a fire rose inside me. He had gave life to the lion inside me. I stared at the ceiling for some more time and fell asleep after sometime in my bed not sure when. I never knew that night that,”The wink and the wicked smile of that murderer would turn my life upside down. That It would turn me into a Super Hero.”
**To be Continued**