Abandoned but Not Forgotten

Purnima lives in a small house in a village in Assam with her elder sister, Hubeswari. Having remained unmarried, they were left alone in a small house built on government land.

Purnima had a stroke when she was 44 years old, which caused paralysis in her right hand. Neither Purnima nor her sister had a job when the pandemic struck, so they they had only government rations to survive on.

Someone offered to help Purnima get a disability certificate, but they duped her into paying 3,000 rupees ($40) for nothing. Many times during the lockdown, the women had only plain rice with no curry to eat, as nobody would help them. Then they were identified through members of EHA’s Disabled Peoples’ Organization and provided with dry goods such as rice and lentils, which they said would last them about 2 months.

Purnima said, “We are very grateful that people not known to us are helping us when our own people are not. This is the first times in about 20 years that we are getting to eat good quality rice!”