Penniless,a tribal farm labourer in Gujarat pushed his two polio-stricken sons on a wheelchair for 60 kilometres to get treatment for one of them.
Balu Vasawa of Sahanpur village in Mangrol taluka put son Nitin (15),who was suffering from gastroenteritis,and younger son Paresh (14) in a wheelchair and started his long journey to the civil hospital in Surat on Thursday after treatment at the local private hospital came to a naught. When the 50-year-old wheeled his sons into the hospital on Friday evening,the doctors were amazed at the mans sheer grit.
Nitin was discharged after treatment on Monday. But when the hospital authorities came to know that Balu had no money to return and would have to push them back home as well,the Surat Nurses Union Association president Ikbal Kadiwala came to his aid with money. He also arranged for an ambulance to drop the trio home.
Ikbalji helped me with money and also arranged an ambulance. When my son was taken ill we didnt know how to pay for the hospital expenses. The doctors at the private clinic told us that we will get free treatment at the civil hospital in Surat. But since I didnt have the travel fare I decided to take my son by wheelchair to Surat, said Balu.
Kadiwala said he became aware of Balus plight when he saw him taking his sons back home in the wheelchair. He said he had no option but to take his sons back home in the wheelchair. Soon,we started collecting funds and also arranged an ambulance to take them home, he added.
After his elder daughter,who used to look after his sons,was married off a few months back,Balu had no option but to bring his other son along. My wife has to stay back and work in the fields. we cant afford to forgo that income, he said.