Himansu Shekhar Rout

In an unexpected turn of events, an elderly person of Sonepur, who remained missing for over seven years after abandoning his home in a huff, got reunited with his family thanks to ‘puffed rice.’ 

As per reports, Lakhpati Bharasagar, a resident of Gopalpur under Ullunda block in Sonepur district, had left home in a huff seven years back. His family members frantically searched for him at many places for years but failed to trace him. The family presumed Lakhpati dead.

The family had lost hope of finding him when his son Shiva received a call from Jamuna village in Jajpur that his father had been traced.

As per reports, Lakhpati had no idea about how many places he wandered in the last seven years after leaving the village. He had strayed into Jamuna village three to four days ago and used to stay under a tree. As he was hungry, he went to a nearby Rajkishore Mohapatra’s house and asked for puffed rice. This started a conversation and Mohapatra’s family sought to know about his identity.

The family ascertained his identity and contacted Lakhpati’s family. The villagers took care of the elderly and tidied him up. 

Rajkishore Mohapatra said, "I spotted the man three days ago. When he asked for puffed rice, we got to know his name and address. I searched for the village on Google. I wanted to get the contact number of any person living in Ullunda. I chanced upon the contact number of ‘Ullunda News’, a newspaper. One Ratnakar Bhoi’s number was found. Bhoi helped me a lot and managed to contact Lakhpati’s family. I had sent the photograph of Lakhpati to the family who identified him.” 

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Lakhpati’s son, daughter-in-law, and other members of his family rushed to Jamuna to reunite with him. His family is now on cloud nine after getting him back.

Shanti Bharasagar, daughter-in-law of Lakhpati, said, “He was mentally unstable and had left home. We searched for him but to no avail. We got information about him from Rajkishore bhai and are taking him back home.”