A 15-year-old ailing Pakistani girl’s plight has moved hearts across the border. Complete strangers from India, along with a Mumbai based NGO, are crowdfunding to collect Rs. 10 lakh for her treatment.
She belongs to a different country and may have very little in common with us, but when 15-year-old Saba Ahmed cries in pain, all the differences just seem to melt away.
Saba is a resident of Pakistan and she is suffering with a rare genetic disorder called Wilson’s disease.
It is caused by the accumulation of copper in the body which gradually results in the degeneration of the liver and brain. When the doctors in Karachi could not help her any more, Saba’s mother, Nazia had no choice but to come to Mumbai’s Jaslok Hospital to save her daughter. She undertook the journey alone with just Rs 80,000 in hand.
What she didn’t expect was that an entire nation would stand behind her.
With the help of Shabia Walia of the Bluebells Community (a Mumbai based NGO), and some very generous donors, Nazia managed to put together the remaining Rs 7 lakh needed for her daughter’s treatment in India. However, when she returned to Pakistan, Saba’s condition deteriorated again. The doctor who was treating her at Jaslok Hospital has now asked Nazia to continue her treatment in Mumbai for a few more months.
“My daughter is so feeble that she cannot even walk on her own to the toilet. She needs to reach Dr Aabha Nagral at the earliest. For her treatment, the hospital has given us a quote of Rs 10 lakh,” she told the Times of India.
But before Nazia could be even remotely disheartened, the same Bluebells Community which had come to her rescue earlier, put up the ‘Save Saba’ appeal on its Facebook page. It says, “A child on either side of the border deserves the right to live, irrespective of which country he/she is being treated in”.
Contributions are flowing in fast and thick already. Complete strangers have gone out of their way to help the girl. Meanwhile for Nazia, all the love her daughter has received in India has been nothing short of overwhelming. “I now feel I have a new family in Hindustan,” she added gratefully.
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