Many of us have overcome difficult situations thanks to the kindness of strangers, and this story is no different. Had it not been for the exceptionally well-coordinated intervention of an ambulance operator, one man who had recently suffered a stroke and was in critical need of medical treatment would have probably not survived.
Gangadharan, who hails from the town of Kanhangad in Kerala, had been working in Bahrain for the past 25 years when the unexpected incident occurred in the middle of work.
Although he initially sought treatment in Bahrain, the financial burden soon became difficult for his family to bear, and they decided to take him back to India for a more economically viable alternative. He was flown back to Kerala, and his family decided to continue his treatment in a hospital in Mangaluru.
Unfortunately, an air ambulance that could airlift Gangadharan to either the Mangaluru or Kozhikode airports could not be arranged by the airport authorities. Instead, he was flown to Kochi, and his family subsequently took the call to take Gangadharan to Mangaluru by road.
This, too, was a burdensome task, as every passing second was critical and they had no time to waste in search of ambulance services.
Thankfully, help came in the form of a few voluntary organisations in Bahrain who reached out to an ambulance service based in Kasargod, through online media, whose owner Muhammad Illam readily agreed to transport Gangadharan.
What is heartening is that Muhammad not only managed to cover a distance of 425 km in a record duration of 5 hours and 25 minutes, he didn’t charge the family any money for the service. The marathon drive took place on Tuesday.
The act of kindness doesn’t end here. In order to provide a clear passage without any obstacles to the ambulance, the common public also rose to the occasion and contributed to the mission by hosting a Facebook live.
This way, they continuously updated the real-time location of the ambulance so that the traffic police could clear any traffic issues which cropped up.
“With an exception of few towns, we had different police envoy helping us navigate at various nodal points enroute, especially between Thalassery and Kannur. From Paiyannur onwards, we had police vehicles along with us until we reached Karnataka border. In fact, even people on the road volunteered to clear the road. We had commenced the journey from Kochi at 5:30am on Tuesday and managed to reach Mangaluru before noon,” says Muhammad to The Better India.
Thanks to Muhammad and every single person who volunteered, Gangadharan is currently under treatment at a private hospital in Mangaluru and is recuperating.