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Dhaka Tribune

11 years after Sidr, a missing fisherman returns

Villagers say Shahidul went fishing in the Bay of Bengal on November 15, 2007

Update : 19 Nov 2018, 01:41 PM

Shahidul Molla, who had gone missing during Sidr, returned home to Amragacchia village, in Sharankhola upazila, on November 12—11 years after the devastating cyclone.

Villagers said Shahidul, along with his father and two other fishermen – Masum and Selim – went to the Bay of Bengal in separate boats, to fish, on November 15, 2007. All of them were washed away when Sidr struck the country that day.

Manju Begum, Shahidul’s elder sister, talked about learning from local people that a mentally disabled man, identifying himself as Shahidul, had been roaming around Amragachhia Bazar, reports UNB.

Manju went to the bazar and found that Shahidul was sleeping on a bench under the shade of a bus stand.

"At first I could not identify him but after some time I came to recognize my brother—seeing his cut mark on the left side of his forehead. Later, we took my brother back home," said Manju.

Shahidul’s family was overjoyed to have Shahidul back—though Shahidul's father, Phul Mia Molla, and the two other fishermen remain missing.

Panna Faraji, Shahidul’s brother-in-law, said Shahidul has four children: Putul, 20; Mukul ,18; Masum, 17; and Masud, 11.

Not knowing Shahidul’s whereabouts, his wife, Masuma Begum, married  another man and went to India to work, he said.

Furthermore, Shahidul’s family members claim that he has lost his mental balance as he fumbles while talking. He cannot remember how he reached Amragachhaia.

Jakir Hossain Khan Mahiuddin, chairman of Khontakata Union Parishad, said, "It is good news that Shahidul has returned. Shahidul's name was put on the missing list made after Sidr. Steps will be taken for his medical treatment."

According to government's official account, around 695 people were killed while 76 people went missing when Sidr lashed the upazila on November 15, 2007.

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