A toddler waits for parents who may never return

A toddler waits for parents who may never return

Every time this two-and-a-half-year-old girl wakes up in excruciating pain, she yearns for her mother’s lap. The only words she speaks are “maa” and “papa.”

She has multiple fractures in both legs and one in her wrist. She keeps on crying for long, oblivious of the teddy bears placed by her side on the hospital bed to soothe her. All she looks for are her parents. But they might not return. They are presumed to have perished in the Uttarakhand flood.

Nature’s fury has probably robbed the girl of her parents. She doesn’t know their names, nor does she know where her home is.

She is too young and traumatised to offer a clue. The child helpline women have named her Gudiya. After long, inconsolable hours of crying, Gudiya gets exhausted and dozes off. This has been her routine for the last five days, ever since she was brought to Doon Civil Hospital in the state capital on Sunday.

The girl was rescued from one of the flood-battered areas and brought to a relief camp in Rishikesh.

Gudiya bore the pain due to the fractures in her legs and wrist all the while she was being evacuated, brought to the relief camp and admitted to civil hospital. While she was given medical aid at the camp, it was only at hospital that her legs were plastered and intensive care was provided.

When Deccan Herald visited the hospital on Thursday morning, Pallavi (32) had the girl in her lap.

“She was crying all this while and has just slept. She cries so much, then she tires out and sleeps,” she said. Pallavi, who runs a boutique in Dehradun, visits the hospital daily to take care of Gudiya. She has been praying for some miracle to unite the girl with her parents.

Her prayers have gone unanswered for the last five days.  Speaking to Deccan Herald, Neha Sharma, the child helpline staffer who brought Gudiya from Rishikesh and has been attending to her all these days, said: “There are a few teddy bears, chocolates and toys on the bed in the emergency ward. But they are of little use. The baby’s haemoglobin was barely six counts and doctors gave a unit of blood on Wednesday.”

Neha had sustained a head injury. She is awaiting reports of a CT scan. Officials said in case relatives don’t turn up, Gudiya would be sent to Shishu Niketan. She would be available for adoption thereafter, Neha said.

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