The family of a Mumbai-based engineer, who was declared brain dead after he was grievously injured in a bike accident during a visit to his hometown in Pune, has given a new lease of life to four people by donating the victim’s organs. On October 2, two unidentified bikers rammed into Govind Kulkarni (46), while he was taking a stroll on the service road, near his home at Mount World Grand Society in Pashan, Pune. Kulkarni was rushed to Mid-Point Hospital and later admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of Jehangir Hospital.
Three days later, his condition worsened and Kulkarni was declared brain dead on October 5. With his chances of survival looking bleak, the family decided to donate his organs after consulting with the hospital staff. The Zonal Transplant Coordination Centre (ZTCC) in Pune, led by Aarti Gokhale, immediately swung into action and after shortlisting the recipients, the hospital carried out a surgery to harvest the organs, early on Saturday morning. “The heart was sent in 90 minutes via a green corridor to Fortis Hospital in Mulund around 5 am. The recipient was a young 23-year-old man,” said Dr Prashant Khandelwal, the neurosurgeon at Jehangir Hospital, who performed the surgery.
One kidney was donated to a 23-year-old woman on the waiting list at Jehangir Hospital; another was given to a 62-year-old man. Kulkarni’s liver was donated to a 71-year-old male gynaecologist at a Pune hospital. Kulkarni is survived by his wife Mitila and daughter Aatriya, 12. “Though my husband is no longer with us, the fact that his organs helped save the lives of four people will always reassure us of his presence,” said his wife, Mitila.
Dr George Eapen, CEO and director of Jehangir Hospital, said, “Kulkarni’s family is truly the hero in this case. Despite losing a loved one, they did not hold back from saving the lives of four patients in Pune and Mumbai.”