Once MNC employees, this couple now lives under tarpaulin


TOI, 03-12-2017 20:55:20


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Once MNC employees, this couple now lives under tarpaulin

MANGALURU: A well-educated Dalit couple hailing from Ujire, who was once employed with a multi-national company and stayed at a flat in the city, has now been living under a tarpaulin.

All was well until a debacle in the family turned their lives upside down. Though the couple, who is now struggling for one-square-meal a day, applied for housing under the Ashraya scheme several months ago, nothing concrete seems to have happened on ground.

Asha and Vijay, in their 30s, are degree holders. Destiny brought them together at a multinational firm in Mangaluru. Vijay was a manager where Asha, then stranger to him, joined as an employee. Cupid struck between the two and they entered wedlock. They moved in to a rented flat. In course of time, the couple was blessed with two sons.

Just when everything seemed perfect, workload allegedly took a toll on Vijay and he became a victim of mental disorder. As his employer realised the case, he was shown the doors. On the other hand, Asha, too, had to quit her job. As their future looked bleak, the couple shifted back to Asha’s ancestral house in Ujire.

Though Asha, whose parents are no more, inherits some property, it is disputed. To make things worse, her relatives allegedly assaulted Vijay and kicked them out of the house. As the matter reached the police station, the couple was forced to leave the ancestral house. With no place to live and no money to afford a rented accommodation, the couple came on streets. Rotary Club Mangalore Central then helped them set up a tent-like structure using a tarpaulin and a solar unit good enough to light a lamp and charge a mobile. Asha and her family have been spending their days under this tarpaulin since the last few days.

Applied for housing

Asha told TOI she applied for accommodation under Ashraya scheme at least six months ago. However, after the intervention of some social activists, work has just begun.

Explaining the reason for the delay, Gayatri, the panchayat development officer of Ujire, said, "Funds from the government have been released now. The release of funds took some time. Also, the benefactors have to shell out some premium to get the work started. They did not. Hence, we could not proceed with the case."

Asha said the panchayat has promised her to grant the house in a few months. "Life for me wasn’t always a bed of roses. I rose up the ranks after I grappled many difficulties. Hence, I am okay with living under the plastic cover. However, my husband was born with a silver spoon. It is a pain to see him and my children suffering," Asha said narrating her plight.

Gayatri told TOI that it may take a few months for the construction of the building. Seems like until then, the tarpaulin is the only saving grace for the family.

Comments on this Article
James Fernandes, Barkur/Chicago Mon, December-4-2017, 9:33
Sorry, I mistook for Christmas crib.
Agree[0]
Jossey Saldanha, Mumbai Mon, December-4-2017, 8:20
Acche Din ...
Agree[1]
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