THE next 48 hours will be extremely critical for Scotiabank worker Rostan Mahabir after enduring six hours of surgery to remove a bullet from his abdomen after he was shot yesterday morning during a robbery.
Mahabir, a loans officer for the past eight years, had just parked his car in the bank’s Penitence Street, San Fernando car park, and was walking with his laptop bag to his workplace on High Street, when he was attacked.
An eye witness said he heard someone shout “Give me your bag”, and a second voice crying out, “Somebody help me, help me please.”
“I turned around to see the bandit pulling the bag from the victim, who did not want to let it go. He pulled out a gun and shot the banker in his belly. The victim fell to the ground on his back but was still holding on to the bag and calling for somebody to help him. He was bawling and biting on his jacket. The youth man with the gun just mash him, pull the bag away from him, throw it over his shoulder and started walking casually down the street, before running off.” The bullet, fired at close range, may have damaged his pancreas, kidney and intestines.
For approximately six gruelling hours, doctors at the San Fernando General Hospital fought to stop the bleeding and save the life of the 28-year-old Orange Valley, Carapichaima man.
It was a touch-and-go situation for a while, and an appeal went out via his Facebook page for donation of A+ blood. Scores of family, friends and former classmates gathered at the hospital to donate blood and pray for his recovery.
Only his father Rudy Mahabir, mother Lorraine Alberto, step-father Felix Alberto and close friends were allowed to see him after he came out of surgery and was placed in the intensive care unit. A family friend who spoke to the media said it was too early to tell if Mahabir was out of danger as he was still sedated.
The bank remained closed yesterday and provided counselling for affected workers.
President of the San Fernando Business Association Daphne Bartlett called on Ag Commissioner of Police Stephen Williams to return the joint army and police patrol to San Fernando. She said Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, who laid a wreath in China, where he is on an official visit, needs to take stock of what is happening with crime in his country or he may have to lay a lot more wreaths here. She said it is time to examine the psyche of bandits who feel they can commit crime in the light of day and get away with it.
Inspector Don Gajadhar is leading a team, including Sgt Ramroop, Cpls Bacchus, Mohammed, Pulchan, and PC’s Moses and Clarence to investigate the crime.