Dana Majhi, the man who was forced to walk for hours carrying the dead body of his wife in Kalahandi, Odisha, has been given Rs 8.87 lakhs in aid by the Prime Minister of Bahrain Prince Khalifa Bin Salman Al Khalifa, The Economic Times reported.
Majhi came into the news last month after his 42-year-old wife died of tuberculosis and he couldn't pay for an ambulance to take her body back to his village for cremation from the hospital. It was reported that even though there was an ambulance on the premises, it hadn't been inaugurated by the politicians, and so, it could not be put to public use. The hospital authorities denied the charge and said Majhi did not want to wait for an ambulance to be arranged.
Majhi, who wrapped his wife's body in bedsheets and set out on foot carrying it on his shoulders, was accompanied by one of his three daughters, weeping inconsolably. Their journey, which lasted several kilometres before local people and a lawmaker arranged for an ambulance, was recorded on camera by a journalist.
After Majhi's ordeal was made public and it hit the headlines, several organisations came forward with financial aid. Sulabh International gave him Rs 5 lakhs, along with Rs 10,000 every month for his eldest daughter till the time she gets married or is employed. The district administration offered Rs 30,000 and a sack of rice, a philanthropist in Maharashtra sent Rs 80,000, and a sum of Rs 75,000 was released under the Indira Awas Yojana. The Naveen Patnaik government also gave him land to build a pucca house.
Ironically, it took a death in the family and the experience of gruesome indignity for Majhi to get enough support from the state and other organisations to live with dignity. For the first time in his life, he took a flight to travel to Delhi and collect the cheque from the embassy of Bahrain, The Indian Express said.
Coming from one of the poorest districts in the country, known for its poverty, Majhi lost his first wife at childbirth. Even now, with all the money he has been given, Majhi can neither hope to own a vehicle, as his village doesn't have proper roads, nor electronic gadgets, as there is no electricity.
As NDTV reported, his only wish is to educate his three daughters, which would involve sending them away to Bhubaneswar, a 13-hour journey from where he is, as there are no educational facilities nearby. It would also leave him all alone back in his village.
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