NATION

Locked Up, Help Sought For Bedridden 77 Year Old Man

Babu Singh broke his pelvic bone three years ago at work and since then he has been bedridden.
13 Jun 2019 12:42
Locked Up, Help Sought For Bedridden 77 Year Old Man
Bedridden Babu Singh, 77, at his Cunningham Road home on June 11, 2019. Photo: Ronald Kumar

Seventy-seven-year-old Babu Singh spends his days locked inside his Suva home because he cannot move around and has no one to look after him.

Mr Singh broke his pelvic bone three years ago at work and since then he has been bedridden.

The tragedy worsened when two days after he was discharged from hospital his son Dalip Singh passed away from a heart attack.

His daughter-in-law has since looked after him.

She had to keep her job at a garment factory in Suva while looking after Mr Singh and her two children.

“I was working at the Shiu Mandir (temple) at Rewa Street. My duties were cleaning the temple, sweeping, hosing dirt away and other small chores,” said Mr Singh in a frail voice as he lay in his bed.

“Three years ago, I was carrying a table when I slipped on one of the steps and broke my hip. I have not been able to walk. I cannot afford the surgery.

“And I lay in this bed when my son died and I was here when they brought his coffin into the house.”

His nephew Manoj Singh said he was providing assistance whenever he could from the USA.

He wanted to know if his uncle would be given any type of workmen’s compensation, so help could be hired for him.

“I know that under the law my uncle is entitled to workmen’s compensation. I am hoping his employers, who are a religious body, realise the suffering my uncle is going through,” he said.

Mr Singh’s grandson Shival Singh said the issue was not limited to being able to afford a caregiver.

He said they could not get taxis to come down to their home in the informal settlement at Cunningham Old Road.

He added the area was prone to crime.

Shiri Sanathan Dharam Pratinidhi Sabha of Fiji operates the temple.

President Suruj Prasad said Mr Singh was not employed at the temple.

On Tuesday, Mr Singh was visited by officials from the Ministry of Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations.

Edited by Epineri Vula

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