Kaushalya recovers from mental illness and returns home after two years

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Report and Pictures by Prakash Katapadi
Bellevision Media Network

Shankerpura, 15 June 2010: A mentally ill woman from Maharashtra who was away from her family for two years and had been an inmate in the ‘Vishwasada Mane’ at Shankerpura regained her mental health and was finally reunited with her father on Saturday, 12th June 2010.

Hailing from Kothodi in Maharashtra, Kaushalya took a shock when she suddenly lost her husband and became a victim of mental illness. Leaving her six year old son and parents, Kaushalya wandered from place to place and finally landed in Karnataka. Kaushalya’s father, Shankar Tukaram Patole, a poor farmer, searched his daughter in many places and even came to Karnataka three times but could not locate her. Lack of knowledge of Kannada also made his task finding his daughter difficult. Kaushalya is the last among three daughters of Shankar Tukaram Patole.

On year ago, when Kaushalya was roaming around aimlessly at Parkala near Udupi, Pastor Sunil John D’Souza of the ‘Vishwasada Mane’ shelter in Shakerpura took pity on Kaushalya and brought her to the shelter of the destitute that he was managing along with dedicated volunteers. Kaushalya who had not washed herself for months was given bath and new clothes by the women volunteers of the shelter. Sunil John also made arrangement for a psychiatrist to treat Kaushalya. Due to the care taken by the volunteers of the shelter and treatment given to her by Pastor Sunil John, Kaushalya’s mental health began to improve and within six months she was back to normal. Gradually, she began to remember her past and even gave the address of her father to the volunteers. Pastor Sunil John wrote letters and sent to her father at the address mentioned by Kaushalya. However, there was no response as her residence was a small hut and there was a possibility of the letters not reaching their destination.

Pastor Sunil John D’Souza

Early morning on Saturday, 12th June 2010, there was a surprise visitor to ‘Vishwasada Mane’. He was Kaushalya’s father Shankar Tukaram who somehow came to know about his daughter being in the ‘Vishwasada Mane’ in Shankerpura.  He met Pastor Sunil John and explained about his daughter, Kaushalya and expressed his desire to take her back home. When Kaushalya was brought to meet Shankar Tukaram, she immediately recognised him and cried bitterly. She told in Hindi to Sunil John that the person who had come seeking her was her father. Shankar Tukaram also cried in joy that finally he could find his daughter after two years.

Pastor Sunil John who had taken care of Kaushalya in his shelter was happy that finally he could reunite the daughter and her father. As Shankar Tukaram is very poor and did not have enough money to take his daughter back, Sunil John made arrangements to send both father and daughter back to their native place in Maharashtra.

Pastor Sunil John had started the shelter, ‘Vishwasada Mane’ five years back to rehabilitate mentally challenged destitute persons. Presently there are around 150 persons in the shelter from different parts of India including the states of Karnataka, Tamilnadu, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Kerala, Maharashtra and Goa. The inmates of ‘Vishwasada Mane’ are being provided with clothes, food and treatment. Fifty three inmates of the shelter have recovered their mental health and have been reunited with their families. There are around 20 persons who have recovered but could not rejoin their families due to lack of proper address of contact.

The ‘Vishwasada Mane’ working for the betterment and rehabilitation of the destitute does not get any grant from the government. It is being run on voluntary contributions from the generous philanthropists from India and abroad. The story of Kaushalya and her recovery from mental illness and her eventual reunion with her father indicates the kind of work done by Pastor Sunil John D’Souza and his dedicated volunteers.

The address of the ‘Vishwasada Mane’ is:

Pastor Sunil John D’Souza, Director,

‘Vishwasada Mane’ Rehabilitation Centre,

Bethel Church, Shankerpura, 

Innanje Village, Udupi District, Karnataka.

Phone: 09880219562.


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Comments on this Article
Victor D almeida, Moodubelle/Bahrain Thu, June-17-2010, 12:24
Thanks Prakash Katapadi for your report about a mentally ill woman got a new life from brother Sunil, God Bless him for his great work by respecting the religion called humanity. It is very sad not getting any grants from the Government plus elected leaders from our community not bother to put word a regarding betterment of these rehabilitation center it so annoying
Juliana Martis, Moodubelle/Mira Road Tue, June-15-2010, 1:33
God Bless you brother Sunil for the great work you have been doing for so many years.
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