“He’s the only one who can save us from our misery. I want him to study and become successful in what he wants to do but now, if he loses his leg, he’s going to lose his will to live. He won’t even be able to do labor in the farms like us if that happens. I’m literally begging everyone I meet to help my son.” – Kamarul, Asik’s fatherFrom being a highly active and bright child to being depressed by the fear of losing his leg and life, the 16-year-old Asik Ikbal is suffering from a crippling pain due to a deadly form of bone cancer far away from home. Not only does he need several cycles of chemotherapy but he also needs a surgery to treat his damaged bone. His father, a daily wage farmer, is desperately begging on everyone’s door so that he can try to save his son.
Kamarul and Asik at the hospital
Asik’s cancer spread so rapidlyJust over 2 months ago, Asik bruised his right leg while playing cricket. Despite medicines, the pain refused to subside and after a few tests, Asik’s family was horrified to learn that he was suffering from bone cancer.
“I can’t believe that the bone in his right leg has already been damaged in less than 2 months. When we were first told that his leg has to be cut off, we were terrified. My wife and I were crying every day because Asik has so much potential. Now, after getting him checked in Bangalore, there is hope of keeping his leg. I begged and got around Rs. 40,000 to start his first cycle of chemo but we are in constant fear of losing him to poverty,” – Kamarul
Asik wanted to help his family out of misery but his life took a drastic turn
“Asik just passed his 10th exams and he was going to pursue higher studies. He wanted lift us out of misery and poverty so that we don’t have to work on farms for meager sums anymore. He’s extremely good at cricket too. He was the one who’d make others laugh a lot. Now, he’s just so depressed. He’s become very thin, doesn’t speak much and doesn’t even want to eat. He takes around 17-18 tablets a day! He’s so weak and I cry when I look at him because he feels like he’s dying.” – Kamarul
Asik has no option but to undergo a long and brutal treatmentWith the speed with which cancer has spread, it will become fatal soon if left untreated. To keep his leg and life, Asik has to undergo 4 cycles of chemo followed by a limb-saving bone surgery, followed by 4 more intense cycles of chemo. Hailing from a poverty-stricken home in rural West Bengal, Asik has to remain in Bangalore, where he’s being treated, for at least 8 to 10 months.
Kamarul can’t even afford Asik’s medicinesKamarul is a very poor farmer who works on others’ farms and earns around Rs. 2000 every month which is less than Rs. 75 per day. There is no way he can pay for his weekly medicines, let alone the chemotherapy and limb-saving surgery.
“His injections cost around Rs. 550 every day and his medicines cost around Rs. 2000 every week. The doctors have said that Asik should not travel back home because he can catch infections during the 34-hour train journey. To rent a room in Bangalore, it’s around Rs. 10,000 per month. How am I supposed to afford this? We’re extremely poor and without help, what option does my son have besides dying?”
How you can helpUntil now, Kamarul has literally begged from door to door to gather Rs. 40,000 to get Asik’s chemotherapy started. With 7 more cycles of chemo and a surgery left, Kamarul is desperate to save his son’s life but he can’t even afford his medicines. He needs your help to save his son.
Your support will save 16-year-old Asik and ensure that he remains the symbol of hope for his poor family.