Beating illness, he excelled in art, studies
Abhishek H Gorappanavar from Maasanagi village in Byadgi taluk of Haveri district is a child extraordinaire.
Though born with classical hemophilia (a bleeding disorder) of severity, this nine-year-old has overcome his illness and poverty, and outperformed all his ‘blessed” class-mates in school examination and painting.
Abhishek is the youngest of the four children of farm labourers Hanumanthappa Gorappanavar and Akkamma. After learning that their son was suffering from hemophilia, they took him to Karnataka Hemophilia Society (KHS) in Davangere in August 2009.
Dr Suresh Hanagawadi, President-KHS, Davangere, a hemophiliac himself, told Deccan Herald “Wen Abhishek’s parents admitted him at our centre, he was a violent boy yelling at everyone and, he was unable to bear the severe pain. After the treatment, he did not want to return home and wanted to stay back in the hospital.”
KHS Women’s Group chairperson Meera Hanagawadi counselled the boy and learnt about his strong desire to go to school. But he could not pursue his dream due to his parents’ poverty. The KHS staff took the help of a painter Prahlad Bhat to teach the art to Abhishekh to divert his attention from his pain, Dr Hanagawadi said.
Sudha Kadaba and her husband Ganesh of the US had come to Davangere around the same time. “They visited our centre and donated Rs 50,000. Sudha’s father Malleshappa is a retired engineer in Davanagere.
The couple sent their daughter Malavika, a Class 12 student in the US, to Davangere to study basic science and she also did a health-related internship at KHS. Malavika grew friendly with Abhishek and she gifted him several articles,” he said.
Malleshappa wanted to see Abhishek as his daughter Malavika had spoken to him about the boy. After listening to his story, Malleshappa sponsored Abhishekh’s education by paying Rs 25,000 a year.
When KHS thought of putting Abhishek in a boarding school run by Anmol Educational Association, its President Dinesh CG, after initial reluctance, got the boy admitted in his school, which charges an annual fees of Rs 60,000. He even agreed to pay from his pocket the remaining Rs 45,000. Thus, Abhishekh started a new life nine months ago, Dr Hanagawadi said.
“The school authorities provided me food in the class room, while my classmates went out to have their lunch. During the break, I used to draw/paint pictures of flowers, birds, animals and great personalities. My teachers noticed my interest and trained me in painting. As I get involved in painting, I forget my physical pain,” Abhishek told Deccan Herald.
Dr Hanagawadi received a call, a month ago, from the school authorities asking him to attend parents’ meeting as Abhishek’s parents expressed their inability to come to Davangere. The KHS staff and Malleshappa also went to the meeting. “Our joy knew no limits when it was announced that Abhishek had emerged topper both in the school examination and painting,” Dr Hanagawadi said.
Abhishek said: “I want to become a doctor and invent medicines for the diseases that haunt people for lifetime. I am confident that I will accomplish it.” On the other, the US-based Malavika is in regular touch with him and, she supports all his initiatives.
(For details about Abhishek: www.carehemophilia.com/7760310023)