A non-government organisation (NGO) rescued a mentally ill woman who was chained up by her family for 36 years in Firozabad, Uttar Pradesh. The woman was rescued this Sunday, October 9, a day before World Mental Health Day.
The horrific condition came to light when Bharatiya Janta Party MLA Anjula Mahour took cognizance of the situation. She contacted Seva Bharati, an NGO that works among the economically weaker sections of society and rescued the 53-year-old woman.
Mentally Ill Woman Chained Up For 36 Years
The woman, identified as Sapna Jain is a native of Mohammadabad. After she was rescued, her family members claimed that they chained her up when she was 17 years of age when she fell ill to stop her from leaving.
Her brother, Deepak Jain said that they had taken her to several doctors in Agra around the start of her illness, but nothing helped. He claimed, “She used to hurt herself and that is why we kept her in chains, we unchain her only for daily activities for which other family members assist her”.
According to villagers, her family members would feed her through a crack in the door and she was provided water for bathing through a window. Jain was admitted to a hospital in Agra for treatment.
Suggested Reading: 70-Year-Old Woman Locked In Toilet: Why Are We Silent About Elder Abuse In India?
Dr Dinesh Rathore, Medical Superintendent, Agra mental institute spoke with news agency ANI. He said, “A woman aged 53 years hailing from Firozabad was rescued and brought here. She was kept shackled in chains in a room by her family for 36 years, who believed that she was mentally ill”.
Rathore added that Jain was found in a “very bad condition”. He said she found was wearing filthy clothes covered in dirt and NGO members bathed her and provided her with clean clothing. He informed that her medical tests are being conducted and added they were hopeful about her recovery.
He said, “We are hopeful that she will recover soon, maybe within a few weeks”.