Mrunal Manmay Dash

Malkangiri: It seems the tag of Swabhiman Area to the cut-off Chitrakonda block of the district is more hype than reality. Similarly. The utter neglect towards a specially-abled family of the region bears ample testimony towards the fact.

The family of Bhima Khila from Jamujodi village under Papermatla Gram Panchayat in Chitrakonda block has three blind teenage girls and two boys, both physically handicapped.

As per reports, without any land to their name, Bhima Khila is forced to toil as a daily wager. Lack of money has proved to be a major hindrance in the treatment of his children.

Though villagers of Jamujodi have repeatedly demanded the government to provide the family with basic amenities, Bhima, however has lost all hopes of ever getting any assistance due to utter negligence by the concerned authorities. The situation has forced the local community to wonder whether all the big talk on upliftment of the ‘Swabhiman Anchal’ is publicity.

“I have five children and all are divyangs in one way or another. If I could get any help for my ailing children, it would be a great help for me,” said Bhima.

Jashoda Khila, one of the blind daughters of Bhima rues their situation and said, “I was born blind. I can’t imagine my condition if something happens to my parents. Where would I go”?

The story of government neglect doesn’t end here. There is another family in Ganjam district that has been struggling to survive owing to inaccessible governmental assistance.

Four members of the family of Govind Sethi in the Chikarada area under Golanthara police limits have been suffering from an unknown disease since long. Govind and his daily-wager son are the only bread earners in the family. As per reports, the only government help the family is getting is PDS rice and old age pension that more often than not proves to be meagre for carrying out treatment of the ailing members.

Govind Sethi said, “We eat on whatever my son brings home after toiling hard in the fields. We don’t have any money to provide better medical care for my family.”

Meanwhile, sources said, the district collector of Ganjam had sent a medical team to the Sethis after getting information on their ordeal.

Gayatri Sethi, the daughter of the family said, “My legs started swelling some time back and I couldn’t walk. Right now, my condition is improving following a treatment by doctors.”

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