5 December 2019 I Remains of domestic violence victim Santosh Gautam were flown out of Sydney yesterday afternoon while his 8-year-old daughter remains in good care of another Nepalese community family in Sydney.
Mr Gautam’s fellow cricketers from various community cricket clubs gathered last Tuesday to bid final goodbye to their killed comrade. Members of the Nepalese Cricket Association of Australia (NCAA) paid tribute to their mate at the open casket service held in inner west of Sydney.
One of his close friends recounted his heartbreaking experience of having to see his mate’s young daughter in that solemn gathering. Requesting anonymity, he told southasia.com.au that the daughter seemed completely unaware of what was going on with her father.
“She was shuffling around, and talking to people. There is no way she realised that her dad had passed away,” the young man said, “It was very difficult for me to see a friend’s daughter in that position. It was very hard!”
Mr Gautam, who ran an auto workshop in Granville, was killed in a domestic-related incident on 23 November. His wife remains in custody and it is understood a court hearing is to take place on 23 January.
According to friends of the 32-year-old car mechanic, the remains were repatriated through a funeral agency in Burwood, leaving Sydney at 1:30 pm on Wednesday.
The passing of the young father has badly affected community cricketers within the Nepalese diaspora – in Sydney as well as across Australia. In Sydney alone, there are nearly twenty Nepalese cricket clubs. They play friendly matches every Sunday – all through Summer. “It is a lot of fun at Beaman Park every Sunday with nearly 200 community members attending these events,” said a friend of the deceased.
The beer-loving all-rounder religiously attended those games and was very much loved by all, he reminisced the deceased. If not for the fatal incident, Mr Gautam would have driven to the Beaman Park pitch that Saturday.
Victim’s team members said they knew the Gautam family very well as he often brought them to community events. “He used to love partying with his team members, sometiems we used to go for beers after games,” a friend said last week, adding he was an extremely affable character.
According to police, emergency services were called to the Blaxcell Street address around 7.30 pm on the fateful evening where the DV-victim was found seriously injured. “He was treated at the scene by paramedics before being taken to Westmead Hospital where he died,” police statement read.
Cricketing friends of the DV victim have set up a GoFund page to raise funds. As for Thursday, the campaign has raised nearly ten thousand dollars.