December 22, 2018, was just another day for Pawan Shah, a 30-something auto driver in Delhi. His shift had commenced, and at around 10:45 in the morning, he was heading home after dropping off a passenger.
Shah was just about approaching the Meethapur canal when he saw an unusual sight.
A woman was standing at the edge of a bridge, holding a toddler in her arms. Within a fraction of a second from when Shah had spotted them, she jumped into the gushing river below.
Shah was horrified. He knew that the duo did not stand a chance against the icy-cold waters, so without wasting a second, he left his vehicle and dived into the river.
According to the police investigating this case, Shah managed to grab the one-year-old boy but knew that he wouldn’t be able to save both of them on his own. So he started shouting for help hoping that someone would hear his cries.
Fortunately, three men, Rajveer, Jamil and Sanjeev were within earshot. They rushed to the spot and saw Shah struggling to hold on to the woman and her son and ensure that their heads were above water.
They immediately formed a human chain, lent a hand to the woman and pulled them to safety. Unfortunately, Shah’s muscles had given up, and he was swept away by the strong current.
A Police control room in Delhi was informed of this incident, and they immediately sent boats and divers to search for Shah. Unfortunately, he was nowhere to be found and is now presumed to be dead.
The woman, who later confessed that she had attempted to commit suicide after a fight with her husband, and her one-year-old son were taken to a hospital and are out of danger.
Shah’s distraught family members, who were planning to get him married soon, are still hopeful that he is alive and well.
Chinmoy Biswal, a DCP in Delhi told the Times of India, “We will recommend Shah’s name for the Jiwan Raksha bravery awards.”
(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)