Mumbai: Manohar Tapasne (58) was looking forward to October, as his son-in-law Somnath Salve was set to complete a month at his new job as an ambulance driver, and his second daughter’s wedding was to take place at the end of the month.
Instead, on Wednesday he found himself at the BYL Nair Hospital in Mumbai Central waiting to collect the mortal remains of Salve, and thinking of all the things that needed to be done to reschedule the wedding.
Twenty-eight-year-old Salve — called Vishal by his family — married Tapasne’s older daughter, Sonali seven years ago. The duo had three children aged five, three and two, and lived with Tapasne, his wife, son and younger daughter in Nerul.
Salve was close to Tapasne and took major life decisions only after consulting him, but he took up the job as an ambulance driver with a private contractor despite his father-in-law’s disapproval. Salve was hired by a company that was contracted by the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) to operate ambulances after he got the job, Salve moved out of his Navi Mumbai home and began to live in a shared accommodation in Mumbai Central.
“He reasoned that this job will fetch him better money and enable a better life for his children. I thought this job would have long and uncertain hours, so he won’t be able to give his children much time. He still went ahead and took it,” Tapasne said, adding that his son-in-law’s first salary was supposed to have been credited on October 5.
“How do I set up one daughter’s home when the other’s has been destroyed?” he said referring to his second daughter’s wedding that was fixed for October 30.
Salve’s brother-in-law, Vicky, who works the night shift in a restaurant, was unable to answer his phone on Wednesday night and the authorities eventually called Tapasne at 5am to inform him of the accident. It was only on reaching the hospital that he was informed of Salve’s death.
Tapasne, who has lost his sight in one eye, worked as a daily wage worker. He said that he may have to start working again to provide for his grandchildren. “Since there were two earning members in the family, I could retire peacefully. I don’t want my son (Vicky) to take undue pressure,” he said.