24 July, 2021

An NGO brings a little light into their otherwise short, pained lives

An NGO brings a little light into their otherwise short, pained lives
Twenty-five-year-old Kamlabai of Nanded, Maharashtra, never could figure out why three of her children had died. But when her fourth child, one-and-a-half-year-old Sangrakshit, started falling ill, the desperate mother was ready to do anything to save him. She brought Sangrakshit to Hyderabad for treatment—but instead of a cure, she discovered a cruel truth about her family. Both Kamlabai and her son tested HIV-positive and the doctors informed her that the deadly virus had probably caused the death of her other children as well. It also explained the deteriorating health of her husband, an out-of-work auto mechanic.

Every hospital she turned to shut its doors on her. As the helplessness of her situation sank in, a traumatised Kamlabai—seven months pregnant—miscarried. Today, her only hope is Diya, a voluntary organisation that has taken the seriously ill, malnourished Sangrakshit under its care.

Diya, part of the Freedom Foundation, was inaugurated on Children’s Day this year and is one of the first centres in the country dealing with specialised care for...

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