SRK’s healing touch for kids orphaned by terror

MUMBAI: “We are going to meet Shah Rukh Khan’s children,” said an excited Muddasir Mushtaq. Five-year-old Muddasir and his sister Amina (3) were
seriously injured in a grenade attack in Srinagar last year. An unexpected meeting with their favourite actor, Shah Rukh Khan, came as a ray of hope for the two who lost both their parents in the attack.

The actor, who learnt about their plight, not only brought them to Mumbai for treatment, funded their surgeries at Nanavati Hospital, but also came to their bedside to cheer them up.

Avid fans of the actor, the children used to collect his picture postcards at home, before a grenade attack tore their home apart in March 2008. The resulting fire killed their father, a police officer, on the spot and their mother succumbed to her injuries, two weeks later. Both Muddasir and Amina sustained more than 50% burns and were initially admitted to a local hospital in Srinagar where a preliminary plastic surgery procedure was performed.

Shah Rukh found out about them from Ali Irani, chief of physiotherapy at Nanavati Hospital. The children came to the city on December 12, 2008, with their cousin Mohammed Zubair (24) and family friend Mohammed Yousuf. The children cling to Zubair, the only person they trust now. “Amina needs me to be by her side every time she wakes up,” said Zubair, a second-year BCom student who gave up his studies to look after the duo. Their impending visit to Shah Rukh’s home now keeps them occupied.

Immediately after the suspected terror attack on their home, S A Mujtaba, senior superintendent of police, Srinagar, took the children under his wing. “The SSP took care of their treatment and has done more than even a parent would have done for his children,” said Zubair.

The siblings were initially hesitant to come to Mumbai but agreed when they were promised that Shah Rukh would meet them, said Zubair. Their dream finally came true on December 19, when the actor went to visit them in the hospital. “Initially, the children were rendered speechless on seeing Shah Rukh standing before them. However the hour-long meeting turned out to be a memorable one with the actor promising to take them to his home and introduce them to his children-Aryan and Suhana,” said Yousuf.

Dr Atul Shah, consultant plastic surgeon at Nanavati Hospital, who performed the corrective surgery on the children along with his colleague Dr L D Dhami said that they hope to give clean faces to both the children and release the contracture in their hands that occurred after their first surgery in Srinagar.

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