Mumbai: Ex-students come togeteher to help their teacher fight cancer

Updated: Jun 29, 2019, 08:09 IST | Rupsa Chakraborty |

One of them has started an online crowdfunding campaign, through which Rs 5 lakh has been raised, mostly contributed by her former students from across the world

Fatima Kaneez with some of her students
Fatima Kaneez with some of her students

Forty-eight-year-old Fatima Kaneez, a chemistry teacher of a city-based school, has been fighting for her life since the day she was diagnosed with tongue cancer. What stares in her face now are the spiraling medical bills of the hospital where she underwent a surgery last month and has now been put on ventilator. But, amidst all of this, some of her former students have come as a ray of hope with an online crowdfunding initiative to raise money for her treatment.

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Manasvi Gupta, 26, who started the campaign on Ketto, said post Fatima's surgery at Jupiter Hospital, her condition deteriorated and she had to be shifted to the ICU. She further said though the hospital bill has crossed R9.5 lakh, the authorities agreed on giving her some more time for making the payment. Doctors are of the opinion that the bills might go up further depending on the course of treatment. Gupta added that in view of Fatima's condition, she might have to be kept on ventilator for some more months.

Manasvi Gupta
Manasvi Gupta

She also mentioned that as her teacher comes from a middle-class family, which includes her son and 75-year-old mother, it would be difficult for her to bear the medical expenses alone, hence she decided on starting the campaign. She has already managed to raise R5 lakh through it, contributions to which has been made mostly by Fatima's former students.

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"Even when I got to know that she was suffering from cancer, I didn't realise that her condition was so severe. But when another friend of mine got in touch with her family, we got the real picture. We all came together through the campaign on social media to help her recover," said Gupta, who is currently looking after her father's business in UP. "She is known for her humble nature and was also one of the best teachers we ever had at school. It is extremely difficult for us to see her like this. Hence we are trying to help her. Some of her former students, who are settled abroad, have also donated money for her treatment," she added.

Meanwhile, a senior doctor from the hospital said, "We are trying our best to ensure that she survives. We generally don't force patients to pay the bill in such extreme conditions. The hospital is cooperating with her. Depending on her condition and the number of days for which she would be kept on ventilator, the bill might go up to R20 lakh."

Also Read: Mumbai: Teen aims to raise Rs 40 lakh for cancer patients

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