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Actor Atul Srivastava went through a harrowing phase during the ongoing second wave of the pandemic. After returning from a shoot in Lucknow, he developed Covid-19 symptoms and was admitted in hospital. Back in hometown Lucknow, three of his brothers got seriously infected and unfortunately two younger ones couldn’t survive .
“Last month was really a worst phase of my life. I myself was in hospital and requesting people on social media to help find bed for my brothers. My acquaintances did help me in getting them admitted but sadly we were unable to save two of them,” said the veteran actor, best known for his roles in ‘Stree’, ‘Bajrangi Bhaijaan’ and ‘Lukka Chuppii’.
Both of his brothers were part of the entertainment industry too. “Mayank was a known choreographer and has worked in 130-odd films mostly Bhojpuri with all top names and some 25 Hindi films. Prafull on the other hand was a senior film editor and has worked in films and TV industry. My elder brother Sanjay is recovering well and its only now that we told him about our family’s loss. My sister too caught the infection but thankfully she is fine now. My bother in-laws were our saviours,” he said.
Talking about the phase, he said, “I came back from Lucknow on April 13. I was negative then but then I developed symptoms. And I was tested positive and when my condition worsened, I was admitted in a hospital. My lungs were affected but now all is good. Luckily, God was kind and doctors in Mumbai were my rescuers.”
He admits that he made a mistake by continuing with work even when the cases were surging. “I had this fear and was very cautious, but I overlooked it. After falling sick in Varanasi, I should have rested more but then my old-school habit of commitment made me return for shoot. I did not realise that my immunity was low and thus I got infected. Shooting in this phase was my mistake…I should have been logical!”
The family is yet to overcome the trauma. “There was a constant scare that my wife and son don’t get infected following me. The time is such that I can’t come to Lucknow when my family members are in such a grief,” said the actor who is not planning to resume shoot for a longer period now.