Edit Corner

Jesus what happened at St Joseph

Imagine this sight, a person at a home-for-the-aged or a home-for-the-desolate is dead, wrapped in a cloth and thrown in a ambulance-cum-truck of vegetables with two other elderly people – one woman and one man.

Now imagine that this person in the cloth is a parent, you discarded in an aged home because you were too busy with your social life to take care of your parent.

The shocking incident of the St Joseph’s Hospice in Tamil Nadu which was caught due to an alert motorist, throws light on two crucial concerns in today’s society. Firstly, the dubious workings of some NGOs – in this case a Christian NGO – in their core responsibilities whether its running a home for the aged or an orphanage for children.

There is no mechanism for a persistent check on most of the NGOs, if there are adhering to the tenets of their institution or indulging in questionable activities – like alleged on the St Joseph Hospice of being involved in organ trade – this matter should be investigated and if true, the culprits must be punished severely.

If you do a background check of some of the orphanages run by different religious institutions, don’t be surprised to hear gruesome tales of sexual abuses right under the noses of the authorities who turn a blind eye or are part to such sexual crimes.

The problem I suspect is with our very perverse human nature. Since old people and orphans are considered to be discards of normal social living by their family, some assume that no one would care about their life and their life is not worth the trouble, so either they are treated like dirt or made victims of social evils.

I don’t know the reasons behind what drives children to leave their parents who have given them a life and sacrificed their lives for their happiness to then consider their parents to be interfering and a burden. These children are also parents, someday their children will treat most of them in the same way.

I have travelled to a lot of homes-for-the-aged, most of these old citizens just want to be heard, cared for and loved. The seek that love from the very children they have loved.

It appalling the manner in which St Joseph Hospice acted in the case of this dead body and the reported treatment meted out to Anamal – the woman in the truck – who was suspicious about the intent of the NGO personnel and cried for help – that alerted a motorist, who then alerted the police.

It is certainly inhuman to wrap a dead body in cloth and throw it in a truck of vegetables that also acts as ambulance. The act shows a complete breakdown of apathy and empathy on part of the workers at the NGO, as though that life was that of dead rodent, you are carrying to throw in the garbage.

St Joseph Hospice must be investigated and its NGO license must be revoked for this sheer inhumane act.

I sincerely pray that the allegations of organ trade are not true, if so, it will bring to shame to many good NGOs that actually provided humanitarian services to the aged and orphans. But if they are true, then they must be punished like all criminals.

Savio Rodrigues

Savio Rodrigues Founder & Editor-in-Chief GoaChronicle.com

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