The tragic death of 15-year-old S. Satiswaran, who immediately died after getting hit by an office chair that was thrown from an upper floor of the Sri Pantai Public Housing’s Block 102 in Pantai Dalam yesterday (15th January), has gripped the nation since news of the incident surfaced this morning.
Satiswaran’s family members are left inconsolable over the sudden loss of their youngest son. The grieving family were also accompanied by the chairman of the People’s Housing Project (PPR) Tursiah Sinor, who reportedly witnessed the horrific tragedy last night.
“Around 7.30pm yesterday I was with three other friends gathering signatures on the 11th floor, when we heard a loud crash followed by screaming. Fearing the worst, we rushed downstairs to the main lobby facing the playground,” she told the Malay Mail Online.
When they rushed over, their worst fears were confirmed when they saw a lifeless Satiswaran lying on the floor while his mother, S. Kasthuri Bai was kneeling beside him covered in his blood and sobbing. A broken office chair was on the ground next to them.
“There was little I could do but kneel beside Madam Kasthuri to hug and comfort her until the police arrived a short while later,” Tursiah continued.
Since news of the young boy’s death broke, PPR has demanded action to be taken against whoever was responsible for throwing the chair.
“There have been numerous instances of irresponsible parties simply throwing garbage from the corridor balconies, which even resulted in injuries to whomever it hit below. But not like this.”
“I should not be surprised that this could have happened. Even more tragic that it had to happen to him. He was a mere child with his whole life ahead of him. I hope finding whoever threw the office chair will provide closure for his mother and family.”
The PPR chairman expressed her outrage over the senseless tragedy, as she had frequently warned residents not to throw out garbage from their balconies.
Meanwhile, Satiswaran’s father, Sathiasilan, told reporters that he was on his way home from work at around 8.06pm when he received a call from his distraught wife, saying,
“I rushed back as fast as possible, praying he was only wounded. But words left me when the first thing I saw upon arriving was his body covered with a white shroud. Neighbours later told me they had seen the office chair abandoned for some time on the 21st floor.”
“The entire block knew him, he was such a friendly child. I had been saving up money so that he could go on and study culinary arts, as he always told us he wanted to become a chef. Now I must head back to Kuala Lumpur Hospital, and wait for the post-mortem to be completed.”
The 15-year-old’s grieving mother is in disbelief that her youngest son has passed away. She told Sinar Harian about her traumatic experience, saying,
“My son fell in front of me… he was looking at me but his eyes were empty. I could only yell for help while holding onto him. His brain began to ooze out of his skull and I kept my hands on him to make sure it didn’t come out.”
“Today, my son is no more… he became the victim of someone else’s laziness. This person simply threw a broken chair over their balcony instead of just bringing it down to dispose it.”
“The life of an innocent child was lost all because of someone else’s negligence.”
“Today, it was my son, but tomorrow, it could be anyone else or even their children. Why hasn’t any action been taken? Before this, there have already been many cases of residents throwing out their belongings. There were people who got hurt by these falling objects and had to get 16 stitches.”
Satiswaran’s family have since been given financial assistance from Umno Lembah Pantai division chief Datuk Seri Raja Nong Chik Raja Zainal, who visited them along with Federal Territories Minister Datuk Loga Bala Mohan and representatives from DBKL and MIC.
“An example must be made of those who so casually chuck objects from such high vantage points. I will also ask DBKL to consider installing some form of barriers along the corridor balconies,” Datuk Seri Nong Chik told the Malay Mail Online.
Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar also visited the family to offer her condolences. She told the daily,
“This is one of the worst-maintained public housing in KL, with residential refuse irregularly taken out and public utilities in disrepair. But the biggest menace is and always will be people throwing garbage from the upper floors.”
“I cannot begin to imagine how heartbreaking it must be for the mother. I will continue to press DBKL to better maintain Sri Pantai along with other public housing in KL,” she added, saying that safety nets should be installed on the lowest floor to reduce such tragedies from occurring.
As for the individual who allegedly threw the chair over the balcony, no arrests have been made yet according to Kuala Lumpur Criminal Investigations Department chief SAC Rusdi Mohd Isa.
Our hearts go out to Satiswaran’s friends and family and hope that the person responsible is apprehended soon. We cannot imagine how heartbreaking this must be and do hope that they can find strength during this unbelievably difficult time.
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