The monsoon rains in Karachi wrought havoc for millions of people, destroying their homes and livelihood. For 2 year old, Kaleemullah’s parents this time is forever etched in their memory as probably one the most testing times of their lives. Their youngest son was out playing in the street in the rain when a stray dog bit him on the face.
“I still have nightmares about his cries of pain and the absolute helplessness I felt when I saw his bloodied, mangled face.” says Marjan, Kaleemullah’s father.
Upon hearing the agonized screams of the young child, people nearby rushed to his aid, trying to distract the wild dog away from him at the risk to their own lives. The dog had clung on to Kaleemullah’s face for what seemed like ages before they were able to pull him away. By this time Kaleemullah’s older brother had come running from the house, at first he did not know whom the crowd was gathered around. Fighting his way to the front he saw his baby brother’s face covered in blood. At this point it was impossible to tell how much damage had been done, he quickly gathered Kaleemullah in his arms and ran for the house, screaming for his father the entire way. Marjan was busy safeguarding his house from the rain pouring in through various leeks in the roof. Hearing his older sons panicked shouts he rushed and upon seeing Kaleemullah’s innocent face covered in blood he felt as if his world had come crashing down around him.
He immediately dashed outside looking for a ride to take them to the nearest hospital but there were none in sight due to the pouring rain. The utter helplessness he felt in that moment while his was screaming in agony was perhaps the worst moment of his life. One of the neighbors who had rescued Kaleemullah was nearby and he offered to take them. Navigating through the flooded streets and traffic jams they finally managed to reach the hospital where the child was taken to emergency and given stiches for the cuts on his forehead and near his eye. However, Marjan’s biggest fear was that his child’s eye may have been damaged permanently.
Marjan works as a leather factory loader and is the sole bread earner for his wife and 8 children. Living in a rented house and paying school fees for his eldest two children left nothing as savings. Although the doctors had assured him that Kaleemullah’s eye should be okay but he was worried about it being disfigured and his child losing his sight forever. He was going from hospital to hospital when a news channel heard about his son’s condition and covered it on their channel.
A kind donor of LRBT saw the news and immediately arranged his checkup at LRBT Korangi Hospital. The devastated father was contacted and he brought Kaleemullah who was examined under General Anesthesia. The doctors repaired his left eye lid with upper and lower punctal.
Marjan was overjoyed when the doctors told him that his son would make a full recovery. On Kaleemullah’s follow up visit he said, “The pain I saw my little boy endure and the paralyzing fear that his eye may have been permanently damaged is something I will never ever forget. It was through Allah’s help and the kindness of so many people that my son’s life was saved. My biggest fear had been my son going blind and treatment being so expensive the only thought running in my mind was having no money, who would help us? LRBT, its doctors and the donor were a miracle for us. My child’s entire treatment was free and not only was Kaleemullah’s vision saved but his eye shows no signs of ever having been damaged at all.”