“She puts on a brave face. She is always smiling and playing. But I can see the pain she keeps hidden inside, and it breaks my heart.”
Thimappa is a doting father to his daughter Chethana (18) and Kusuma Priya (7). He works as a State Government Employee, in the Karnataka Prison Department. Though he works in a shift pattern (alternating nights) he makes sure to spend as much time as possible playing with his children.
This is especially important to Thimappa because he had an eldest son- who passed away seven years ago under suspicious circumstances.
“We thought that something was wrong with the way that he died- but we could not afford to pursue the issue”
From the outside, the family seems like a small but happy one. Unfortunately, Chetana has been suffering from seizures since her birth.
18 years old, and visited 8 hospitals:
Chetana has had seizures since her birth. When she was younger, her parents took Chetana to the pediatric hospitals nearby, and the doctors prescribed medicines that she took for 3 years. Seeing that there was no change in her health, Thimmappa took her to another hospital in Davengere, where another medicine was prescribed. Over the past 18 years, Chethana has undergone painful courses of treatment at 8 hospitals.
She was finally diagnosed with a seizure disorder, and was suggested a surgery that would remove this problem. With this surgery, Chetana could finally lead a normal life.
Despite these difficulties, Chetana completed her 10th standard in 2015. Since then, she has been forced to stay at home. The closest PU College would require her to travel alone everyday- and her parents are terrified about her having a seizure and nobody being around to help. Chetana now stays at home, and the only company she has is that of her younger sister.
“I only feel bored when my sister isn’t around. When she is around, I feel very happy- nothing bothers me then”
A ray of hope:
It was at the last hospital- Sakra Hospitals, where the doctors told Chethana’s parents that there was a surgery that could cure her. They recommended Vikram Hospitals- where the surgery could be done at a relatively cheaper cost. The family got an estimate of Rs 8 lakhs from the doctors for the surgery.
A family struggling to save their eldest daughter:
Thimmapa earns Rs 17,000 a month- after his PPF deductions. This is barely enough to support a family of four. His entire salary goes towards meeting Chetana’s treatment expenses. Her previous surgery cost Rs 3.5 lakhs- that he took out loans to pay. He received only Rs 60,000 from the Government as part of his insurance.
For the latest surgery, he has been granted Rs 3.5 lakhs- but still needs Rs 4.5 lakhs to afford the surgery. This father is desperate to save his elder daughter.
“I cannot afford to lose another child…”
Help Thimmappa afford his daughter’s surgery!