Surat’s Unsung Hero: This 23-Yr-Old Man Helped Several Students Survive The Surat Fire

Sumanti Sen Gujarat

May 27th, 2019 / 5:32 PM

Ketan Surat Fire

Image Credit: India Today

As the country mourns the death of over 20 students who tragically died in the deadly fire that engulfed a building that housed a coaching centre in Surat, Gujarat, a video has now emerged of a braveheart who risked his life to save many students from the deadly fire. 

As smoke shrouded the building, students started jumping out of the windows to escape the fire which is believed to have spread due to willful negligence by authorities and gross structural irregularities. In some of these videos, a man can be seen clinging to the windows of the building, not to save his own life but that of the students trapped inside.

Surat’s Unsung Hero

On May 24, 23-year-old Ketan Naranbhai Chodvadiya from Surat was on his way back home when he saw massive smoke emerging from a building.

Talking to The Logical Indian, Ketan said, “I could not believe my eyes when I saw scores of students jumping to their death from the windows of the building. I was petrified but I knew I had to do something.”

Ketan, who is a B.Com graduate, helps his father his at his factory in Kamrej which produces disposable wares used in dining.

Ketan’s father, who was with him on the spot, encouraged him to help the students. Even before authorities arrived, Ketan gathered ladders to climb up the building. Partly using ladders and partly climbing the building with his bare hands, he reached the third floor.

“The smoke blinded my eyes, but I was not scared. I was horrified at the thought that these children who were about to die. Initially, I saved two girls from falling and ensured they landed down safely. I then attempted to help others,” Ketan said.

“I am deeply disappointed that I could help only eight to ten children out of so many who lost their lives. I am aghast at the negligence which led to the fire, but what surprised me more was the fact that hundreds of people at the spot were busy taking pictures and videos of the horrifying incident.”

Ketan made sure that others present at the spot took the injured to the hospital, but he stayed back because the children needed him.

Ketan Helped 2006 Flood Victims

This, however, is not the first time Ketan has gone out of his way to help people in a moment of crisis.

When Surat was hit by a devastating flood in 2006, 12-year-old Ketan helped his father pack and distribute food packets as relief items for the needy.

“I believe it is my duty as a human being to be there for people who need me,” Ketan said. “How could one watch these kids dying and shoot videos of the same? If others had helped, perhaps more lives could have been saved.”

“I would never fear risking my own life if it could save the life of another person. As long as I am alive, I will be there for anyone who needs my help.”

Ketan’s selflessness upholds our faith in humanity. Not all heroes wear a cape, some like Ketan are regular boys/girls who reveal themselves in times of difficulty. The Logical Indian salutes Ketan for his bravery.

Also Read: The Unsung Hero: Auto Driver Takes Pregnant Woman To Hospital, Pays Medical Expenses For 15 Days


Written by : Sumanti Sen

Edited by : Shweta Kothari

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