KURNOOL: Armed with just his courage and willpower, a 10-year-old started walking from Hyderabad to Bengaluru, pushing a wheelchair with his physically- challenged mother and oneyear- old sister. His goal was to reunite with his three siblings, who were sheltered in an ashram in Bengaluru. He was found near Kurnool, about 350 km from Hyderabad. The tale of this child, Shah Rukh, came to light after Veldurthi Sub Inspector T Narendra Kumar Reddy went to help him on hearing of his plight from the locals on Saturday night, and shifted the family to Bengaluru with help from Dhronachalam Seva Samithi, a voluntary organisation.
Speaking to The New Indian Express, Narendra Kumar said Shah Rukh’s mother Haseena is a native of Uttar Pradesh. After she lost her husband, she went to Hyderabad with her five children, and was eking out a living by seeking alms. Before the lockdown was enforced, three of her children were taken to an ashram for orphans and destitute people in Bengaluru by an acquaintance. She too was to go, but was forced to stay in Hyderabad due to the lockdown.
During the lockdown, Haseena found it hard to survive and was eager to be reunited with her three children in Bengaluru. However, as transportation options were limited and she did not have enough money, she and her son Shah Rukh managed to get a foldable wheelchair from a hospital, and decided to head to Bengaluru. Their journey began in the first week of June, when the lockdown restrictions were relaxed. Shah Rukh managed to push the wheelchair with his mother and sister till Veladurthi, near Kurnool town, which is about 350 km from Hyderabad. When locals noticed them at a roadside dhaba on National Highway 44 on Saturday night, they alerted Narendra Kumar Reddy, who went there, took them to a local shelter, and gave them food.
“Shah Rukh’s courage in wheeling his mother and sister has greatly moved me. Though he is 10 years old, his determination to help his mother reunite with her other children is moving,” the sub inspector said. To help the family, members of Dhronachalam Seva Samithi were roped in and the family was taken to the ashram in Bengaluru on Sunday night, he added, and thanked Dhorachalam Seva Samithi and two youngsters - Shiva and Ravi Teja - who alerted him.