Panna (Madhya Pradesh): Thousands of workers across India are walking to their villages amid the lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but the story of a mother in Satna, Madhya Pradesh, specially stands out.
Rajkumari, a resident of Majhgawan village in Satna, set off on an arduous journey from Surat with her three sons, one of them disabled. She carried her disabled son in a palanquin made of a bamboo stick. When she reached Panna, on her way to Satna, people were stunned to see the woman carrying her disabled son wrapped in a cloth on a palanquin made out of a single bamboo stick. She told the people that she was on her way to her village in Satna.
She said she had gone to Surat with her three sons in search of employment as there was no work in Satna. She worked there for a few days, however, due to the lockdown the work stopped. After a few days when her savings finished, she decided to return to her village. As no buses or trains were plying, she had no option but to walk 1100 km from Surat to Satna.
Rajkumari said they got some food on the way but lived mostly on empty stomachs but did not stop walking. They also got a ride for a few kilometres.
A resident of Panna said, “When I saw the woman coming with her son dangling from the stick palanquin, I was moved. We gave her food and some money.”
A local journalist in Panna gave the information about the woman and her disabled son to the local administration. “Tahsildar Deepa Chaturvedi came and took the woman to the isolation centre. Then arrangements were made to drop her to her village in a government vehicle,” he said.