Defeating disability with their talent and determination

Painting of a masked man pointing fingers confronts you when you visit Saphalyam Shopping complex at Palayam.

Published: 12th July 2017 08:38 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th July 2017 08:38 AM   |  A+A-

Exhibition and sale of handicrafts at Saphalyam Complex  B P Deepu

By Express News Service

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Painting of a masked man pointing fingers confronts you when you visit Saphalyam Shopping complex at Palayam. Ninsy Mariam Mondly, a differently-abled young artist, wanted to confront the self-obsessed world ever eager to accuse others. The drawing extols us to discover the empathy in us. It is part of the items kept for exhibition and sales by differently-abled persons associated with Pallium India, a charitable trust based in West Fort.

Ninsy became wheelchair-bound after a fall paralysed her from chest down. But it has not paralysed her spirit and the desire to be independent. She started drawing because she wanted to show her sister that she too can draw. From simple drawings of pets, she has moved to abstract style. The masked man is the first one in that category. The artist is pursuing her bachelor's in Psychology and has been associating with Pallium since last year.

“I am interested in knowing about human beings, their body and mind. I will be pursuing MA Psychology,” said Ninsy.

The neglect, which Ninsy expresses through her painting, is a phenomenon that has been experienced by other differently-abled artists at the exhibition. Aji Kumar, a resident of Kattakada, is reluctant to seek help from others when he visits the town.

“I ride a tricycle. When I seek help, people either ignore it or make nasty comments. It is a painful experience,” said Aji. He faced similar experience while visiting government offices. “I once had to hire head load workers to carry me down from an autorickshaw while visiting a government hospital. Even the pension for the disabled is not given on time,” he said. But this has not dampened his resolve to go on with his life after a near-fatal accident.

Aji makes a living by making handicrafts from recycled materials and working as a cobbler. He along with his wife Remya makes umbrellas, cloth bags, chappals, soaps and cleaning lotions. The couple received an order from a US based NRI for 50 umbrellas, through Pallium India. During festivals, he rides his tricycle to the venue and sells balloons and decorative material.

Jyoti Kumar, Preedha Jalaja, Manoj Kumar are among the other differently-abled members who pursue their life to the fullest despite the setbacks. The items they have made including cloth bags, pickle, soap, paintings, fancy jewellery are up for sales till Sunday. Pallium India has trained 40 people in various crafts.

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