Asha Parekh’s 15-hour nightmare

Mumbai: Yesteryear’s Bollywood actress Asha Parekh was stuck 15 hours in the city’s life-stopping floods, with barely enough water to moisten her lips. But after surviving a harrowing experience, she salutes Mumbai’s spirit and resilience. Asha Parekh and veteran Hindi character actress Shammi were in one of the thousands of vehicles stuck in a road last week when the city of 15 million was deluged after the worst rainfall in 100 years. “Shammi aunty and I were stuck in my car for 15 hours without food, sleep and barely enough water to moisten our lips,” Parekh said. “Was this really the Mumbai I had grown up in? That thought occurred to me more than once as I sat in the car...”

For her Tuesday began as just another day when she was to drive to town for some work with Shammi. “Little did we know then that we would return home only the next day.” In town, after lunch with friends, the two women finally headed home at 3 pm, a journey that was to last 15 hours. “Our car was stuck in traffic the entire night. There was no movement and we couldn’t step outside since there was waist-deep water.” At Mahim Creek, the car went further under water. “The two of us, and the driver just sat frozen in the car, not knowing what to do. I prayed especially for Shammi aunty who is very old and unwell,” Parekh said.