“I LOST my son and nobody cares.”
Those were the words of a grief-stricken mother, 74-year-old Jean Mahabir, whose son, Sanjay Mahabir, found himself in the wrong place at the wrong time and died for nothing.
On March 2, Sanjay Mahabir, of Wellington Road, Debe, went to a bar where he encountered gunmen who he thought were there to rob the place. He ran out and was gunned down, shot in the head.
Two others, who police suspect were the actual targets of the gunmen, were also killed. A fourth person was shot in the leg.
The Mahabir family is still waiting for justice.
“I feel lost, I feel shattered, I feel hurt,” said Mahabir. “If you know how much losing him pains me. My heart aching for my son, my only son. Why they have to shoot my innocent son? He did not deserve this. My only son dead. I feeling so hurt. I go to bed crying, I wake up crying. This is paining me so much. We cannot get over this. Not at all.”
Sanjay worked as a civil engineer and was the father of one. He was kind and respected in his community, family members say.
Mahabir said her son had just finished work and stopped off at a nearby bar to meet with some other residents.
“It was not unusual, you know, boys meeting up after work. He didn't smoke, he didn't do drugs. He was nice to everyone and lived good with everyone. I cannot cope. How to cope?” she lamented.
Mahabir, who for 40 years has crafted Ganesh murti for the annual Ganesh Utsav festival, said this year she could not bring herself to mould one.
“Every year I would make but I cannot do anything this year. He was supposed to help me this year. I feel like I lost my faith in God. My whole life I doing prayers, my whole family doing prayers all the time and look how I lost my child.”
Sanjay's sister, Judy, said losing her brother was like losing a limb.
“It's not something we can ever accept. It is not something that gets easier to deal with over time as some people think. We were a very close, loving family, celebrating everything together. Losing him was like losing a limb. If someone chopped off your arm, in time you learn to find a way to cope with one arm, but would the pain of losing that arm get easier any day with time? Every day you would wake up crying. Every day you would feel a part of you has gone forever. It is as intense every day as the first day we got the news.
“Our lives have changed forever. We will never, ever celebrate a happy moment without shedding a tear,” she said.
“They (his wife and child) try to cope but I know that whatever we are going through, it's ten times for them because they still wait on evenings for him to come home from work. We need this case solved. Why can't an arrest be made?”
Sanjay would have celebrated his birthday just over a month later in a joint birthday party with his daughter.
“His birthday is the fourth of April and my granddaughter is the third. They would celebrate together. How could they just kill my child? Look at how my family suffering now,” said Jean Mahabir.
The shooting death of Sanjay Mahabir remains unsolved by the police.