Family with two mentally ill members appeals for help
A 55-year-old woman and her son, 30, both suffering from undiagnosed mental disorder, had been chained up for around eight years in their house in Badhukamal area of Rangpur city.
The woman's husband, Abdur Rashid, said he already sold all his valuable properties, including a piece of arable land, to pay for the treatment of his wife Dulali Begum and their son Dukhal Mia.
Rashid now cannot afford their expensive treatment with the money he makes from driving battery-run auto-rickshaw in the city, he said, adding, "I used to have a beautiful family. But their sudden illness is driving me insane."
In 2009, young Dukhal, then only 18, went to Dhaka to work at a garment factory. He came back home a couple of years later when he fell sick. Slowly and with passing of time, signs of mental imbalance started to show and Dukhal even stopped wearing clothes.
Tears rolled down the father's cheeks as he continued, "I had to chain him up in a room after he became violent and attacked villagers on several occasions.
"Dukhal's food is provided in the same room where he also answers to the call of nature... It's just unbearable."
After Dukhal's mother also started to develop similar mental disorders in 2014, Rashid tried to get proper treatment for his wife to the best of his abilities. But Dulali or Dukhal's condition never improved.
Sending out an appeal for help to the affluent and competent organisations working in the field, Rashid said his younger son has been engaged full-time to look after his wife and elder son.
Contacted, Mamunar Rashid Manik, the councillor for Ward 8 in Rangpur City Corporation (RCC), said Abdur Rashid and his family are suffering agonies, as they cannot afford the treatment expenses of the two members of their family.
Abdur Rashid has filed an application with the RCC, seeking financial support in this connection, he added.