The ward nurse in the ulcer ward of TLM Muzaffarpur Hospital, Bihar, visits Suman Devi every day for dressing her ulcer. She has been doing this for a month now. Suman Devi first visited TLM Muzaffarpur Hospital a few years back where she was diagnosed with leprosy. The physician there put her on multidrug therapy (MDT). She was cured, but leprosy damaged the nerves on the skin’s surface on her legs resulting in loss of sensation. That led to ulcer (a secondary complication of leprosy) and now she is in the hospital for ulcer treatment.
Imagine sitting at home without a job despite being a graduate, shunned by neighbours and friends, and with no confidence to carry on with life – all because you have a physical disability.
26-year-old Mamta Gulabrao Kubade had no hope in life. She had met with an accident when she was eight years old, and that left her leg burnt. It resulted in deformity in her lower limb. Despite her disability, she completed her graduation. Job opportunities were rare and she had no confidence to seek out one. Confined to her home in Kothara village of Maharashtra, her days were dreary and nights insomnious. Her self-esteem plummeted to a new low every day.
Sitting quietly on the hospital bed, he stared into space. The snow-white clouds rolling merrily along the deep blue sky didn’t interest him. The halo of melancholy around him thickened every moment. He turned his gaze to his lap. A tear rolled down his cheek and fell on the open book resting on his lap, smudging his name – Kishan Kumar – written in blue ink.