'I need to be brave for my son': Singaporean woman whose husband died in Phuket fight

'I need to be brave for my son': Singaporean woman whose husband died in Phuket fight

Bandhna Kaur
Mr Amitpal Singh Bajaj (middle) with his wife Ms Bandhna Kaur Bajaj and their two-year old son Veer Singh in Phuket on holiday before the incident. (Photo: Courtesy of Ms Bandhna Kaur Bajaj)

SINGAPORE: Life is now like a nightmare she wishes she can wake up from, says a Singaporean woman whose husband died in Phuket on Wednesday (Aug 21) after a fight at the resort they were staying in.

Ms Bandhna Kaur Bajaj, 34, told CNA two days after the incident that she keeps telling herself not to break down, as she needs to be brave for her son.

Ms Bandhna was in Phuket for a holiday with her husband of nine years and their son, who turns two in December.

Mr Amitpal Singh Bajaj, also 34, was killed in a chokehold during a fight with a fellow guest at a resort in Karon, Phuket, said Thai police on Thursday.

The incident at Centara Grand Hotel was sparked after Mr Amitpal confronted Norwegian Roger Bullman, who was staying in the room next to theirs, for singing on the balcony in the wee hours of the morning on Wednesday, Thai police said.

The Norwegian later kicked open the wooden door separating their rooms and they fought, the police said. 

According to the police, the Norwegian claimed he had done so to stop Mr Amitpal from moving but did not intend to kill him.

COUPLE MET AT A WEDDING

Ms Bandha told CNA that she met her husband when they were both 18 at a mutual friend's wedding in Singapore.

Mr Amitpal, known as Amit to his friends, was born in Malaysia and later became a British citizen after having lived most of his life in London.

"We became really good friends and we really clicked because we had the same spiritual (Sikh) beliefs and both enjoyed singing hymns," said the mother of one. 

They got engaged and married in Singapore six years later when they were both 24.

They were in Phuket on a family holiday after celebrating their ninth wedding anniversary in June when the incident happened.

"It's actually been very, very hard, because it was almost like I (am) living a nightmare that I just wish I could wake up from," said Ms Bandhna. 

"When I close my eyes I can still see the whole incident ... but I keep telling myself I can't break down," she said in a calm voice. "I need to be brave for my son."

She said they have a very big extended family, who have been giving her overwhelming support.

Ms Bandhna, who was a housewife and previously worked as an app developer with Mr Amitpal, intends to stay with her family in Singapore for now, but might start working part-time in the future.

Before this, the family shuttled between Singapore and Kuala Lumpur as Mr Amitpal worked in those countries.

SON IS SHAKEN, LOOKING FOR FATHER

Ms Bandhna said that their son is still shaken from the incident and keeps looking for his father.

"Now, when he hears the door open or hears a loud sound, he gets very startled and grips my arm," she said. "He's constantly looking for my husband because my husband was a very hands-on man in parenting."

"In future I would like to tell him that your dad was really, really a great man," said Ms Bandhna.

Mr Amitpal made an impression with people wherever he went, she said, as he always had something witty to say, and was kind, honest and sincere.

"I really loved him, my whole life," she said. "He would always look at other people and say - if you can help them, help them."

She said she feels alright now but is open to seeking help if she needs it.

"I hope God will give me strength and courage," said Ms Bandhna. "Maybe one day, my son will be half the man his dad was."

Source: CNA/ll(aj)

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