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Emotional reunion for Patna girl and her saviour

Madhur Tankha
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Parents gave her the surname of the doctor who saved her life

Amrita Acharya with Dr. Rajesh Acharya at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in New Delhi on Saturday.— Photo: S. Subramanium
Amrita Acharya with Dr. Rajesh Acharya at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in New Delhi on Saturday.— Photo: S. Subramanium

It was an emotional reunion for Amrita, a girl who was given only a week to live when she was four, with her saviour and good Samaritan Dr. Rajesh Acharya in the Capital on Saturday.

It was not without reason that Amrita Acharya’s parents gave her the surname of the neurosurgeon who successfully performed a brain surgery on her at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in 2003. Not only that, Dr. Acharya even persuaded the hospital’s reluctant management to give the girl free surgery as her parents did not have enough money and she faced a certain death.

Amrita’s distraught parents, both educationists in Bihar, did not have Rs.1 lakh for her operation. Amrita was brought to the hospital in a comatose condition.

Hailing from the Samastipur district of Bihar, the then four-year-old Amrita used to get high fever, fits, suffer acute pain and become unconscious. Doctors in Patna had come to the conclusion that she only had a week to live as they suspected a brain tumour.

“Instead of a cancerous tumour, I unearthed a large quantity of pus in the brain in the four-hour surgery. Eventually, the pus was drained out and Amrita regained consciousness after a fortnight. As doctors we get decorated with prestigious awards, but for me the biggest reward has been that this sweet and sensitive girl and her family came to express their gratitude to me after so many years,” a moist-eyed Dr. Acharya told The Hindu .

On Teachers’ Day, Amrita, who came to the Capital all the way from Samastipur with her grandfather, thanked the doctor for giving her a second lease of life.

Having grown up listening how Dr. Acharya saved her life, Amrita idolises him and even wants to follow in his footsteps.

“Dr. Acharya had to fight with the management for my operation. I owe him my life. Thanks to his intervention, I lead a normal life today. Since I have realised how precious life is, I am concentrating more on academics than watching films, though I enjoyed Shah Rukh Khan’s Chennai Express ,” she said.

This Class VIII student, who enjoys playing kabaddi and whose favourite book is Anne Frank’s The Dairy of a Young Girl , aspires to become a doctor. She wants to do something for the humanity at large and feels that doctors are no less than angels for critical patients.


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