“As we celebrate our 75″ Independence Day , I pray for Pramilla Chettri independence… She is a CP (Cerebral Palsy) woman, aged 23 yrs but looks no more than 17, almost confined to the four & walls in her brother’s home at Bagracote Tea garden till one day she found garden’s Gypsy parked coincidently in front of her I house (2006).! was in the area attending a garden function and found her standing next to the vehicle with a bamboo stick placed ee onthe bonnet …not saying a word (didn’t know she was Deaf & 22 Mute too ) but trying to convey a message through her eyes, not understood by me. I left the place to carry on with my own routine, but her face kept haunting me in my thoughts…next day I managed to get her to the office with her sister-in-law and requested her to send Pramilla to the newly started Niswarth centre where we were making Incense sticks with the help of 5 disabled persons. At the centre, Pramilla gradually learned to make incense sticks and became quite regular . She made friends with other disabled members in no time (she had none earlier) and would happily work at the centre in her limited capacity. Her smile charmed many and she soon became the most popular member of Niswarth family. She, with her sign language, motivated us to get more disabled persons to the centre taking the number to 30, making incense sticks, candles, cards and few household items.
In our first function for distribution of Aids & Appliances to disabled at Bagracote in 2008, attended by Planters and many District officials, Pramilla took active part in helping out organising the function. There was downpour soon after the function got over and almost everyone got drenched before getting into their respective vehicles. Bye- Byes were over and as I returned back to the stage, I found Pramilla, completely drenched and standing with her bamboo stick, trying to convey a strange feeling through her eyes..As I drew closer , held her and tried telling in a sign language to go home ….she cried and , mumbled… UNCLE. All her emotions were expressed in just one word she spoke…those around me couldn’t control their emotions too..,Pramilla, for the first time had managed to speak a full word with a meaning…Did it take her 3 years to convey her feelings in words …only she would know. I got a call today from our Centre in charge at Bagracote that Pramilla has stopped coming to the centre …family not very keen …is she going to loose her independence again… sincerely hope not.”
you would be glad to know that Pramila is now! Back With Niswarth and working happily.
There are many like Pramila in Tea gardens and neighbouring villages who suffer similar fate-let us join hands and extend our help to them.