I am posting about Geeta again with the developments so far (I am afraid there hasn’t been much and it sucks). When I first wrote about her and initiated to be part of efforts to give her a dignified life, some final outcome was well in sight. Don’t know where and how the process derailed. I find it pathetically struck and that has pushed me to get it on-board as soon as possible as it cannot be delayed any further. We need to take some urgent steps here and so I am trying every possible lead.
Geeta is in her 20’s. Abandoned by her family, she is youngest of six brothers and sisters. Her father is no more and mother is ill and cannot move. All other sisters and brothers are married. Busy in their lives, they found her a burden and decided to abandon her.
Her bones are deformed and she cannot use her legs and hands. She had an attack of high fever at an early age and probably the subsequent lack of treatment and care led to more deformities in her body. She cannot walk and literally drags her body to move from one place to other. Her mental status is more like of an innocent child.
Yes innocent she is. She is so welcoming and jovial. She has studied till 5th standard and loves to read ‘bhajans’ and devotional songs. She has memorized some like ‘Durga Chalisa’. It was pure joy talking to her last time.
And like a child, she wants to make friends. She wants to hangout. She wants to move. She wants to be loved. She loves her mother. But she doesn’t want to go back to her home and it tells the mental trauma she has been in and the way she was thrown out.
She is staying at an old-age home in Badarpur area of Delhi. Almost of the residents of this old-age home are mentally-ill and that adds to the severity of the problem.
She has been given shelter by ‘Guru Vishram Vriddha Ashram’. She says she cannot make friends at the old-age home as most of them behave abnormally most of the time. And that is the major problem. At times, these inmates may get violent and can attack her and she would not be able to resist.
Vulnerable to exploitation, Geeta has to be moved from this place to some place where she can find people like her, in her age-group, in the care of specially trained and sensitive staff who can respond positively to the mental and physical conditions of such people. She needs to be in a place where she can find extension to her thoughts; where she can learn basics of life; where she can find friends to share her routine life; where she can socialize, a must for her to grow mentally.
I have been trying to locate a place for her but have not come across any apt one. When I met her I realized the urgency in prioritizing the need to find a suitable place for her.
I wasn’t aware of any such place for people like Geeta then. I am still not very sure but I can say we need to be innovative in our approach. If there isn’t any such place, it is gross folly of the system and the society but there is no use in lamenting. It doesn’t serve any purpose. Much positive change can be brought by effective coordination n monitoring or resources already available.
I have been talking to the people concerned and have come across this common talking point that Delhi has not any decent facility for people like Geeta who need customized social behaviour and technical aid. Such differently-abled people like are well into the category who can be trained to be self dependent in their day-to-day lives as well can be given some vocational training to earn something.
Geeta has all the rights to have a dignified life like you and me. And while working on Geeta’s case we need to keep in mind that Geeta is not the standalone case. We should see them as our special responsibility.
Let’s begin with one to start connecting the dots. It’s good that it’s a good team working on this in this final push. We will work it out.
Let’s come forward. Let’s do something.