Her HIV-positive mother sold her for Rs.10,000 to give her two elder sisters a better chance. The woman who ‘adopted’ the girl, tortured her when she refused to work.
Baby Natasha (name changed) landed in a private hospital with burns all over the body, a big wound on the head, both legs broken, hip dislocated and septicaemia. Doctors were not sure about her chances of survival.
About 10 months later, Natasha’s injuries have all healed, but the child, who is in her seventh year, is still in hospital. She underwent six surgeries and her left leg has become shorter than the right one.
A series of timely, right decisions saved the life of Natasha. The Alluri Seetha Ramaraju Academy of Medical Sciences (ASRAM) College Hospital located between Vijayawada and Eluru admitted her on July 5, 2012 on the request of District Collector Vani Mohan.
Offers of support
Several NGOs have responded to the news of the torture of the girl and offered support. The Vijayawada-based Care and Share was one among them. A Mumbai-based businessman offered to foot the medical bills and paid Rs. 1.5 lakh initially. ASRAM general manager S.N. Murthy told The Hindu that the child was medically fit for discharge but the hospital was awaiting the green signal from the Collector.
Care and Share representative Swati Mohanty and Natasha’s mother alleged that the hospital was not discharging the child because of the pending bill of Rs. 4 lakh. This was refuted by Mr. Murthy, who said they were worried over the child’s future.
Ms. Mohanty told The Hindu that Care and Share was ready to take care of the child and her two sisters also.