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Holding his own despite crippling injury

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Dilip Patro working from his home in Visakhapatnam.
Dilip Patro working from his home in Visakhapatnam.

Santosh Patnaik

It's a long journey from sufferer to motivator

VISAKHAPATNAM: From being a sufferer to a motivator – it is a long journey indeed for this software professional.

Dilip Patro (37) works long hours on the computer as a consultant for Tata Elxsi Ltd. from his home in the city. His dream of becoming successful was shattered when he was hit from behind by a two-wheeler while walking after getting down from a vehicle to catch a flight at Mumbai for the United States in 1997.

Dreams shattered

He was paralysed from neck down having diagnosed with ‘quadriplegia'. After slipping into coma, he recovered slowly. Today, Dilip is a success story. He has floated an NGO ‘the ability people' and goes to various hospitals during his free time offering counselling to patients.

By making the car compatible to him to operate with his hands, he could convince the road transport authorities that he could drive a car and got a LLR, becoming the first person with a spinal cord injury in the city to get a licence.

“After getting treatment at Delhi, Vellore and other hospitals, I could learn how to manage myself to the maximum extent possible after 10 years or so,” he says, brimming with confidence.

Dilip is thankful to the management of Tata Elxsi for allowing him to work from home after he faced problem with regard to personal attendant at Bangalore. Son of a businessman Rajeswara Patro, Dilip did MCA from a city college and later completed M.Com from the hospital bed.

It was John, a photographer from the U.S., who taught him how he could live independently. He got to know about John, 23, who suffered a spinal cord injury while cycling in Mussorrie, online.

On a mission

Dilip, who wants to set up a rehabilitation centre in this part of the State for those who suffer spinal cord injury by mobilising Rs.100 crores, is planning to undertake Kashmir to Kanyakumari car expedition after sometime to motivate people with spinal injury.

“Though 20,000 people suffer due to spinal injury in accidents in India, we have only 900 beds at the only comprehensive rehabilitation centre in Delhi,” he points out. He can be contacted at dkpatro@gmail.com.


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