About eight months ago, the police personnel at the Pazhavanthangal Police Station in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, found a woman weeping at the entrance. Distraught, helpless and without any family member in sight, 66-year-old Anushya had nowhere to go. Perhaps she hoped that the police could help her and that had brought her there.
Speaking to The Better India, Inspector G Venkatesan said, “We convinced her to come inside the police station, thinking that she wanted to file a complaint. When she calmed down, she told us that her name was Anushya and that her husband had passed away a few years ago. Her son, who is an alcoholic, had kicked her out of the house.
She was completely helpless, but she didn’t want to file a complaint against her son.”
The police officers decided to help the lady. Since her son could not offer her any financial assistance, they decided to employ her as a help in the police station itself. “We decided to provide her with breakfast, lunch and dinner. She agreed to work at the station, and comes here every day at 7:00 a.m.,” the inspector told the Times of India.
Early in the morning, she cleans the police station, draws a rangoli and fills empty bottles at the officers’ tables. “She also waters the plants kept in the front of the police station. Then the policemen order breakfast and coffee for her before she leaves for her house. She then returns to the police station in the afternoons and evenings and is given food,” he added.
On 27th November, Anushya came to the police station at the usual time, but was carrying a small packet of chocolates with her.
“She distributed them among all the officers as students do in schools. When I asked her what the sweets were about, she told me it was her birthday,” said inspector G Venkatesan to TBI.
“I asked a constable to quickly get a birthday cake for her. She is part of the family, and we wanted to surprise her. We gathered together, singing Happy Birthday, as she cut the cake,” he added.
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Anushya was in tears as the police officers celebrated her 67th birthday. “I have never celebrated my birthday. I can’t believe the police took the effort to plan this for me,” she told TOI.
This is truly one of the most innocent and happy stories we have come across in a while. Moreover, the Chennai police have shown that small gestures, like employing a helpless, abandoned mother and celebrating her birthday go a long way in changing someone’s life.
(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)