Tackling snakes, that too deadly ones, is no child’s play. But not so for Vaishak, all of 12, from Kuduru village in Bantwal taluk. He not only fought off a huge python that tried to swallow him but also saved his elder cousin from imminent danger. He is one of the young bravehearts, who will walk away with Children’s Day Bravery Awards at a function in Bengaluru on Tuesday.
Joining him are Nithin K R (17) of Puttur’s Koukradi village, who saved his little sister who was bitten by a snake, and five others.
Recalling the chilling incident that took place on October 4 this year, Vaishak’s mother Harinakshi said her son was on his way to his grandfather’s house which is a few hundred metres away from their home. It was around 6.15 pm and slightly dark. “A huge python suddenly attacked him from behind. A shocked Vaishak pushed it aside, but the snake came back strongly and tried to wrap him. That’s when he showed real presence of mind. Undeterred, he grabbed a stone lying close by and hit the python in its eye” she said.
Vaishak’s 22-year-old cousin Archita tried to rush to his rescue. But Vaishak warned her to stay clear as the reptile had loosened its grip due to the pain in the eye. He didn’t want the snake to lunge at her.. “By the time Archita akka came there, the reptile had already started loosening its grip on me because of the pain in its eye. If she had come close, it would have left me and jumped on her,” said Vaishak. Finally the snake left him and slithered into the woods.
His parents were not at home when the incident occurred. Harinakshi said, “He appeared to be alright despite the scary encounter and the python tearing out flesh from his leg”. She said she fell unconscious on hearing the news. The Class 7 boy is undeterred though. He has bigger hurdles to cross, one of them being is to serve in the armed forces.
The other braveheart Nithin, 17, did not come face to face with a snake but he helped his sister rush to hospital. His 12-year-old sister Sharanya who had been to deliver milk in the neighbourhood screamed for help as she was bitten by a snake in her leg. Nithin, who rushed to the spot, tied grass around her leg to ensure that the venom did not spread to other parts of her body and “sucked” it out.