Community grieves for murdered doctor

2013-05-16 00:00

THE widow of Dr Bhavish Sewram, who was slain on Monday, prayed quietly as she gazed at the hearse carrying her husband’s body to the crematorium.

Surrounded by family and with her two girls, aged three and five, Yuvadia Sewram spoke words only she could hear, with tears streaming from her eyes, until the vehicle vanished from sight.

Yesterday, scores of mourners gathered at the Aryan Hall in Northdale to pay their last respects to the Pietermaritzburg doctor.

Sewram (33) was shot in his neck, back and right arm outside his surgery in Raisethorpe on Monday.

He died at the scene.

There was a long procession from the gate to the hall to view the doctor’s body.

“Is this a funeral for one person?” a passerby asked in disbelief.

Inside, the hall was packed, with many people standing against the wall because all the chairs were occupied.

Among the mourners were nurses in uniform, who rushed back to work before the service ended.

Sewram was described as a family man, a dear son, brother, community doctor and a charitable man.

He and his friend of 20 years, Dr Llewellyn Pillay, attended the University of Transkei Medical School, now known as Walter Sisulu University.

“This has to be the most challenging day of my life,” said Pillay.

“It all still feels like a bad dream.”

He said that while at university, Sewram told him he wanted to change the world, which he thought was too materialistic.

“He thought he’d bring a new dimension into medicine and would help those who could not afford medical care,” Pillay said.

He said the doctor was an “incredible family man” who would put together a 100-piece puzzle with his daughter and who dearly loved his wife.

Another friend, Dr Elvin Naidoo, said the community was angry, disappointed and overwhelmed with sorrow. “He was wiser than his years and had the heart of a child. In his short life, he achieved most of what we search for our entire lives,” Naidoo said.

Siva Gounden, principal of Deccan Road Primary School, where Sewram was a pupil, said he was a bright star. On November 26, 2003, he paid the school a surprise visit after qualifying as a doctor to thank the teachers for their dedication.

Sewram’s father, Parmanand, thanked the community for their support.

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