4th of April
Rahul Gandhi was filing his nomination in Wayanad Kerala for elections 2019 when a barricade at the press enclosure part of a media truck broke and a number of journalists were thrown to the ground and injured. Upon witnessing the accident the Congress chief and his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra rushed in to comfort the injured journalists
One among them was Rickson Edathil Rickson our Kerala bureau chief this a first-person account form him
You might have been wondering where I have for the last two days. There’s still pain. But I kind of felt that I shouldn’t further delay writing this post. I have a broken bone on my right palm and there is an injury to my shoulder blade. I have reached Thiruvananthapuram from Wayanad only today morning.
Several calls came after the reports of the accident got aired. My sincere gratitude to all the love and concern you shared for me.
Among those who called were believers and non-believers. Some callers wanted to know about ‘the shoe incident’, some asked about the accident whether my fall was real. And some others wanted to know if there was politics behind my injury.
Several trolls are being circulated over the Wayanad accident. It’s a matter of their politics and livelihood and I am least bothered about it. But I felt like sharing what I have seen and experienced. Here is the truth on the incident
We reached Wayanad by Thursday night to cover Rahul Gandhi’s visit to submit his nomination from here. I had a hectic schedule on the first day and I went live in front of the collectorate from the evening itself.
The next day I climbed aboard the mini-tempo van arranged for media at around 11 am. The vehicle was crowded, yet I squeezed in hoping it would ensure a better possibility for good visuals and P2C. Volunteers grabbed onto the sides of the vehicle to clear path for it through the huge crowd. As we proceeded, I moved towards the iron barriers affixed on the sides of the vehicle and tried to go live. However, It didn’t work due to the jammer.
Except for the discomfort when the vehicle went over speed bumps, the journey was quite comfortable. As the road show got over, our vehicle entered a ground in the heart of the city.
The vehicle took a sharp turn, the press persons were thrown to one side of the vehicle and those on the sides grabbed on to the barriers, causing it to snap. I was sitting on the top of the side barrier and as it gave way I fell face to the first to the floor landing on my chest twisting my palm as I landed. The vehicle was still moving and a few of my fellows from the media landed on me further compounding my fall.
My body went numb after the fall. Along with those who ran to our rescue were, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and Rahul Gandhi. Priyanka helped to remove my shoes and unfasten the buttons of my shirt to ensure better air circulation. In hindsight, you may label her act as one of politics in a run up to elections 2019 , but at the time it was an effective first aid measure for me.
Come to think about it now, their presence helped speed up the rescue effort. Soon I was put on a stretcher and administered first aid.
Later, on watching a video of the incident, I saw Priyanka Gandhi was holding my shoes in her hands Rahul pulled the stretcher to the waiting ambulance.
Mere knowledge of first aid is not enough to prompt such an act of service. It needs a compassionate mindset too. From my experience, I learned that Priyanka Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi are not short of compassion.
It’s the quality of a leader. They didn’t have to bother with us. Alternately they could have simply given direction to their supporters to take care of us and got back to their chopper. Yet they didn’t. The attitude that they showed indicates their humanity, care, kindness and leadership qualities.
My lessons from the incident
– All of us should/must get trained to give first aid in the hour of need.
– When you move an injured person to the hospital, bare in mind to send their belonging along safely.
(My heartfelt thanks to all those who stood with me, those who worried about me, and to my organization India Ahead❤❤)