Sunabeda: Dalita Seva Sangha, though not popular in the locality, is a big source of help for Dalita Barik, a 16-year-old physically challenged girl of Raj Bitai in Rajput panchayat of Semiliguda block in Koraput district.
Some employees of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), Sunabeda, were moved by the condition of Dalita, hailing from a poor family, and decided to pool funds to help her realise her dream. Thus the Sangha came into being.
Dalita still remembers the day –November 21, 2016 — when the beginning of end of her childhood days started. Like any other day she was attending her class at Aeronautics Girls’ High School at HAL. Suddenly, she felt an excruciating pain in her right hand. In no time, her condition deteriorated so much that her father was sent for.
She was rushed to the district headquarters hospital (DHH) where doctors said the hospital had no facility to treat her. However, she was found to be anaemic.
After reaching home, she had a fits attack. She was then admitted to a private clinic at Semiliguda. Thereafter, she was treated at hospitals in Vijayanagaram and Visakhapatnam in Andhra and she had the last lap of treatment at a New Delhi hospital.
However, family members had to get her discharged in the middle of the treatment as they ran out of money to meet the hospital expenses. Nevertheless, the doctors had diagnosed her illness as ‘chlorosis’.
A chlorosis patient suffers from blood circulation problem. As blood cannot circulate in arteries and veins, it affects functioning of various body parts. These symptoms were noticed in Dalita. Doctors suggested surgery for which Rs 8 lakh was required.
While her father Padu Bairk tries hard to arrange two square meals for the family, his wife and children do menial jobs. On hearing the treatment cost, the poor couple felt the earth was crumbling under their feet.
When Padu made an appeal through a newspaper, some employees including MG Raju, DK Mohapatra, Premananda Jena, Manas Das, Bharat Mohanty, Rakesh Singh, Swagatika Jena, Sunil Srivastav and Riday Dhali extended their helping hand to Dalita. A fund was created in the name of Dalita Seva Sangha and money was collected for her surgery. An operation was conducted on her hand at SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack. The operation saved Dalita but she had to lose her palm.
Now, Dalita is pursuing Plus II in Science stream at Semiliguda College. The Dalita Seva Sangha is meeting her entire education cost.
Dalita, meanwhile, has become an expert in using her left hand and expressed her gratitude to the Dalita Seva Sangha. She wants to become a doctor.