Two brothers unite after 11 years, thanks to Facebook

FacebookAnkush (L) and Santosh at their Hadapsar home.

Their life story sounded like a typical Hindi movie in which two brothers get separated at a young age only to unite after 11 years. Of course, Santosh Domale (22) and Ankush Domale (24) had no villains in their lives.

While Santosh is a BCom student in Modern College, Ankush had run away from home when he was 13. On July 21, Santosh was getting to bed after being chided by mother for constantly being on Facebook. But at 1 am his cellphone beeped. There was a message in Marathi on his FB profile.

"I am your brother. Call me," it read. He did and it was Ankush. "When I saw his picture on FB, I didn't recognise him as he had a pagdi (turban) and beard. He looked like a sardar. I woke up my mother and asked him if she recognised the person. She confirmed that it was Ankush," said Santosh.

Their mother Hemlata Domale recognised from the cut mark on his eyebrow and cheek. "How can a mother not recognise her first born?"

Ankush was 11 and Santosh nine when their father died. "I took my dad's death very badly. I used to roam about with my friends and stayed away from home as long as possible," Ankush said.

When he was 13, he took his uncle's bike but rammed it into another vehicle. The bike was damaged. "When I went back, my uncle beat me and complained to my mother. She too scolded and beat me. In a fit of rage, my mother threw a Rs 50 note and asked me to leave the house. I did," said Ankush.

With the Rs 50, he ate vada pav. "A Sikh truck driver, who was transporting goods from Mumbai to Nanded, came and I told him my story. He offered to take me along with him," he said. Ankush declined the offer to join his home in Punjab. "So he dropped me at a gurdwara in Nanded," Ankush said.

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