‘Teesra Kuan reminds us of Jallianwala Bagh’

A dead well lies in the middle of an open ground behind Naroda Patiya in Ahmedabad where bodies of the deceased were dumped after the 2002 riots. The well today serves as a dump — a carefully neglected spot in the area.

The residents say they have framed a "mental wall" outside the lane that attaches to the open ground.

Salim Sheikh, who lives close to the ground, said, "For months, the well had smelt of human bodies and rot. No numbers of rains and cleaning could have helped. The bodies were thrown, stacked upon each other."

The bodies were removed after two days when the situation at Patiya came under control.

Zannatbibi Sheikh, an old widow from Patiya, said, "The well reminds us of an incident of Punjab several years ago where women in Punjab had jumped into a well to save their life in Jaliyanwala Bagh. This well, which fetched water at one point of time, became a house of dead like the Punjab well."

When the investigation in the riot cases began, the remains of the bodies were collected from the well. The remains of bones and skin had verified the dumping of bodies in the well after riots.

The dead well still lies in the same condition — charred black from inside, broken pulley and bushes grown over the surface. The well that was closed in 2003-04 was opened again when the Special Investigation Team began probing the case.

The access to the well was denied to Patiya residents once when the investigations began in 2008-09. The children in Patiya have recently begun using one portion of the ground to play cricket but carefully neglect the "haunted" well.

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