By Partha Dasgupta
Souvik Hazra, 20 Student KOLKATA
SOUVIK HAZRA is a second-year student of English in Kolkata’s Asutosh College. On 16 December, the day that witnessed the death of Swapan Koley in Howrah, Souvik, an SFI supporter, lost his left eye in a clash with TMC supporters.
Trouble started brewing on 9 December when the principal was gheraoed by TMC’s Chhatra Parishad. The SFI organised a protest meet in front of the college. The TMCP, too, organised a protest close by. There were provocative speeches from both sides, which soon added fuel to the simmering fire. All hell broke loose, with both sides armed with bricks, iron rods and glass bottles. TMCP supporters chased Souvik. As he ran into the college for shelter, a brick hit him on the left eye.
Souvik, bleeding profusely, was rushed to SSKM Hospital and then to Calcutta Medical College. He had lost vision in his left eye by then.
As a last-ditch effort, he was operated upon that night itself by Dr Suman Mukherjee of Kolkata’s Regional Opthalmological Institute, but this was of no avail. Most parts of his left eye were damaged. This was confirmed by Dr Gautam Bhaduri, director of the institute.
Souvik was shifted to Hyderbad’s LV Prasad Eye Institute. However, his left eye is gone for good.
A resident of Banerjeepara of Behala in south Kolkata, Souvik is the only child of Chameli and Bidyut Hazra, a state government employee. “I have no clue how this happened to Souvik. He was never into active politics. Now that my son has lost an eye. I have nothing else to say,” says the hapless father.