10 deaf and mute people stuck in Gurgaon lockdown, make video call to sign language experts for help

Working for various private firms in Gurgaon, the ten got stuck since the day of 'janata curfew' on March 22 entailing lockdown in the district from the same night.

Published: 31st March 2020 06:05 PM  |   Last Updated: 31st March 2020 06:05 PM   |  A+A-

Coronavirus, shutdown

Image for representational purpose. ( Express Illustration | Amit Bandre)


JAIPUR/GURGAON: Knowing no other way to communicate except the sign language, ten deaf and dumb persons from various states have got stuck in Gurgaon amid the coronavirus-triggered nationwide lockdown, finding it hard to access essentials and often sleeping on empty stomach.

But, not to be deterred by their handicaps, a group of four Madhya Pradesh natives first made video calls to two of their acquaintances in Indore, who knew sign language, and explained their plight to them on phone in sign language.

Working for various private firms in Gurgaon, the ten got stuck since the day of 'janata curfew' on March 22 entailing lockdown in the district from the same night.

Gurgaon was one of the first seven districts in Haryana, where the state government had ordered shutdown, before imposition of the 21-day lockdown on March 25.

The ten include six from Madhya Pradesh, two from Uttar Pradesh and one each from Rajasthan and Uttarakhand.

After the four MP natives contacted sign language experts, Gyanendra and Monica Purohit, they in turn, contacted this correspondent in Jaipur and arranged a video conference with the four.

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"We are stuck. We have very little ration with us, barely enough for one or two days.

We have no adequate food, nor sufficient money and this is an unprecedented ordeal for us because we are unable to communicate without sign language," they told PTI on video calls in sign language, deciphered by the two Indore experts.

They said they have survived the ordeal till now on doles by their neighbours, but are unable to do anything for themselves on their own because of the communication barrier.

"Someone arranged us food packets a day before yesterday but there is nothing after that. We do not know what will happen because the communication is a major hurdle.

We cannot survive for many more days in such situation," the four MP natives said.

The four MP residents are Amit Kumar Pandey from Rewa, Nitin Singh Rajput and Sandeep Soni from Jabalpur and Rakesh Kumar Navdev Katni.

Four of them them are living in rented rooms near Geetanjali Hospital on Rampur Raod in Gurgaon.

They knew no one in their neighbourhood who know sign language and could be of some help to them.

"Shops are not nearby and we do not know what will happen to our jobs. We are totally uncertain.

We have little money and in this situation, we want to return home in Madhya Pradesh as soon as possible," they said.

After contacting PTI, the two sign language experts circulated the story of the four MP men's plight on social media, which resulted in the message reaching six more similar persons in Gurgaon and they too, in turn, contacted the sign-language experts in Indore.

The six include Devraj Raghuvasnhi and Shailendra from MP, Madan Mohan and Robins from UP, Ramchandra from Rajasthan and Ajay from Uttarakhand.

The six are living in different places in Gurgaon.

"We are running short of ration. We are helpless and want ration urgently," said Devraj.

Sign language expert Purohit said there could be more such persons stuck in Gurgaon and elsewhere in the country and the district administration should reach such persons pro-actively to provide them much-needed succour.

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