Failing to get financial assistance for the treatment of her two paralytic children, a woman in Rajasthan has written to the state government seeking permission for their mercy killing.
Ramila Devi, 30, is a resident of Sallada village near Sarada town in Udaipur district, some 300 km from Jaipur.
She has an eight-year-old daughter Bhumika Kumari and a four-year-old son Tanish. Both suffered a paralytic attack about two years after their birth and became physically disabled. The illness has rendered them completely bed-ridden.
She said Wednesday that she posted a letter to the district collector Tuesday in which she has requested him to give her permission for her children's mercy killing.
Ramila's husband Ganeshi Lal Teli said, "My daughter Bhumika was born perfectly healthy. However, when she was about two years old, she suffered from fever and suddenly stopped moving. Her hands and legs got stiff. Same thing happened to our son Tanish."
Ganeshi Lal, a labourer, has spent all his savings on the treatment of his two children.
"We have sold our agricultural land, jewellery and other valuables. Now we are completely broke. We have been running from pillar to post to get some financial help from the government, but to no avail," said Ganeshi Lal.
His wife Ramila said that they don't even have enough money to buy food.
"My children cry out of hunger and I am not able to feed them twice a day. The government speaks of so many welfare schemes for poor people. However, there seems to be no scheme for people like us," she said.
"One may think it as brutal as mothers sacrifice even their lives to save their children. However, in my case, I can't see my daughter and son in such agony and pain. It is better if they die. They would at least get rid of every day's struggle to survive," said Ramila.
Sallada village Sarpanch (council head) Devilal Meena said that senior officials in the district have been made aware of Ramila Devi's plight.
"The family's condition is really very serious. A delegation of villagers will meet the district collector and local public representatives soon seeking help for them," said Meena.
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