A mother rode 1,800 kilometres on a scooter from Maharashtra to Jharkhand to meet her five-year-old son who wasn’t keeping well. Sonia Das was jobless and homeless due to the coronavirus lockdown. So she got on a scooter with her friend Sabia Bano and drove for five days to meet her son in Jamshedpur.

Lockdown Left Her Jobless And Homeless

Sonia was stranded alone in Pune away from her family in Jamshedpur. She was working on a freelance basis at a production house since February. Her husband, Abhishek Ghosh, is a heart patient surviving on Implantable Cardioverter-Defibrillator (ICD) machine. She had to spearhead the financial responsibility of the family and so she moved to Pune. She was supposed to return by March 20. However, due to the untimely lockdown, she was stuck.

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She lost her job in the financial crisis of the lockdown. She had no money to pay her rent either. So she had vacated her residence in Pune and shifted with her friend Sabia Banu. Sonia tried to seek help from the Jharkhand and Maharashtra government to provide her assistance in travelling back to Jamshedpur.

“I tweeted to Jharkhand chief minister Hemant Soren, called helplines of Maharashtra and Jharkhand governments but none was working,” said Sonia to The Hindustan Times. Reportedly, she also tweeted actor Sonu Sood to seek assistance but the effort failed. Finally, she decided to return to Jamshedpur on her own. She left on the night of July 20.

After Reaching Jamshedpur

She reached Jamshedpur on Friday evening when Jamshedpur deputy commissioner (DC) Suraj Kumar gave them the permission to enter the city on Abhishek’s request. She met her family from a safe distance owing to the chances of being infected. Later, they both were shifted to a quarantine centre.

“I saw my son and other family members standing on the balcony upstairs from the road outside our house in Kadma Bhatiya Basti on Friday evening before being shifted to quarantine centre along with my friend”

The Jharkhand health department took the duo’s sample for COVID-19 test. Sabia, reportedly, had a fever while Sonia had developed cough, cold and breathing problem. Their COVIV-19 test was negative. However, the duo has been put in 14-day home quarantine as per their wish. Deputy superintendent of police Arvind Kumar and Jamshedpur Notified Area Committee (JNAC) special officer Krishna Kumar confirmed it adding that the SDO has provided them with free ration.

In the five-day ride, Sonia and Sabia survived on vada-pav and water. “Most people took us for boys as our faces were covered with helmets and we were wearing shirts and pants. At some places, people did stare at us but we left those places immediately,” Sonia said.

While other people they met on the way were good enough to give them food and water. “A person at the Maharashtra border kept calling Sabia enquiring about our wellbeing and safety,” Sonia recalled.

Sonia Das’ journey has won a lot of praise on social media. One of those who hailed Sonia for her resilience was IPS officer Dipanshu Kabra who tweeted about the woman’s journey and said, “For a mother whose son is ill, nothing can stop her to be with the child, not even distance.”

Picture Credit: Times of India

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