HSA fire: Epilepsy patient meets her end on 23rd birthday


JOHOR BAHRU: The father of a Sultanah Aminah Hospital (HSA) fire victim did not expect that his daughter’s 23rd birthday which fell today, would be her last.

Factory lorry driver K Muniandy, 49, said his daughter, M Kaliama was admitted to the hospital five days ago following an epilepsy attack.

“I did not expect a tragic note to her birthday today…my entire family is shattered over her death…we will never forget this,” he said.

He received a call from HSA at 10am, informing him that Kaliama was among six people who perished in a blaze at its premises.

“While my family was preparing for Deepavali, we lost our eldest daughter,” he told reporters at the HSA mortuary compound.

Meanwhile M Arumugam, 20, said he was shocked to hear his colleague, C Neeramala Devi, 24, was also killed in the incident.

He said he had met the deceased on Sunday at their workplace in Woodlands, Singapore and that Neeramala Devi complained she was not feeling well.

Her younger sister told him that Neeramala Devi was admitted to the HSA’s intensive care unit (ICU) yesterday for breathing difficulties, he said.

About 10am, Arumugam received a call that Neeramala Devi had died in the blaze.

“I rushed to the hospital with our other colleagues as we were very close to her,” he said.

N Nageswari, 49, said her son, K Logeswaran, 20, was admitted to the HSA five days ago, following a road accident while on the way to his workplace in Singapore.

“Loges had just started work in Singapore last month…since he was admitted to the hospital, I have been looking after him every day,” said Nageswari.

However she said the scene outside the hospital this morning was chaotic.

“I asked several people and was told there was a fire at the ICU. I felt very uneasy as my son was there.

Not long afterwards, a hospital personnel told her that Logeswaran had died in the fire.

Nur Alina Khalil said one of the fire victims was her cousin, Yusof Hasan, 53, who was admitted for a tumour in the head.

She said: “I only got to know about the incident after watching the news which went viral on Facebook.

“I met my cousin yesterday when visiting him at the ward. He was earlier at the Batu Pahat Hospital.

“At the hospital, Yusof fell in the bathroom and was transferred to HSA for further treatment,” she said, adding that she had accepted that the tragedy was fated.