Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Pramila Krishnan

Cop gets award for helping disabled wards see success

All his three children were born blind but that did not break policeman M Murugan. When the first daughter was born, he thought he was just unlucky getting a blind child and when the next girl too was born blind, he was convinced that the tragedy was manifestation of some sin done in the previous birth. But when the third child, a son, too was born blind, he turned to medical help.
“Dr Mary Abraham in Sankara Nethralaya told me my children were born blind because of my consanguineous marriage to cousin Prema. She said it was impossible to give sight to the kids and exhorted me to give them education as only that would empower them to handle life independently”, recalled Murugan.
He learnt Braille himself so that he would be able to teach the basics in the various subjects at the school for blind in Chennai, to which he sent the three children. “My children understood their predicament and took the challenge boldly. They worked very hard and I must say they have succeeded in life just like any normal person”, said the proud father, who will receive a special award from the Tamil Nadu Handicapped Persons’ Welfare Federation.
“We have been giving prizes all these years to the achievers among the physically challenged people. This year, we decided to honour even others if they have significantly helped the handicapped persons. Murugan is a great example for others to emulate”, said federation general secretary P Simmachandran. He was particularly impressed that the Murugan couple took their children whenever they went out without feeling embarrassed.
While Prema helped the children with their Tamil lessons, Murugan taught the kids English and other subjects. “My superior officers were kind. They would allow me to leave the station at 3.30 in the evening to take the children home (from the school for blind) and help in lessons. It’s unthinkable in the police department to get home so early in the evening”, recalled Muruguan, who retired from the prohibition enforcement wing last year.
He said while the eldest daughter Venkateswari works for State Bank of India, her sister Muthuchelvi is with the Allahabad Bank and the youngest, Mani, is a clerk in Canara Bank’s Anna Salai branch.