Diagnosed with progeria at an early age, Nihal Bitla has proven many a skeptic wrong, with his sheer zest for life. However, it was now his turn to be proven wrong, and by none other than actor Aamir Khan: Bitla shared his bucket list in this message with Humans of Bombay. Along with wanting to visit Disneyland, and seeing the Honda Asimo Robot, he also said he wanted to meet Aamir Khan, but there was not much progress on this last wish yet.
Thanks to the help of several supporters on social media, Khan got the message, and came through: Not only did a delighted Bitla get to meet the actor, he also received an autographed copy of Khan's Taare Zameen Par, a movie he had (earlier) claimed gave him the courage to face many 'adverse situations' in life, along with other 'goodies'. An enthusiastic artist, Bitla presented Aamir with a sketch of Lord Ganesha. Later, he shared several pictures of the duo together:
As elated as he was, Bitla did not forget his mission at hand. In his Facebook message addressed to ‘Aamir uncle’, Bitla said he was sure Aamir would help “spread the word for the Progeria Research Foundation to identify 60 more kids like me in India so they can get the right treatment.”
A rare genetic disorder, Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome, or progeria (meaning premature) is a condition where ageing symptoms set in at a very early age, resulting in an early death. Bollywood film Paa starring Amitabh Bachchan and Abhishek Bachchan garnered a lot of attention towards this disease in 2009. Unfortunately, Bitla was often mockingly referred to as 'Auro', a progeria patient played by Amitabh Bachchan in the film by his classmates. However, he refused to let negativity affect him, and instead continues to fight against the disease every day. Bitla's ultimate goal is to become the Sam Berns for India. He can be followed on Facebook here at Team Nihal.
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