Amritsar, June 22
Around 17 years ago, a neurology disorder, cerebral palsy, suffered by his grandson, Kavish Khanna, forced a 75-year-old local resident, Arun Khanna, to open a treatment centre here for mentally challenged children to ensure that they do not have to run around for treatment like his family members did in 2005.
Kavish was diagnosed with cerebral palsy disorder in 2000, forcing Arun’s daughter-in-law, Prerana Khanna, to move to Delhi to get a specific treatment, which was not available in the walled city. Talking about those days, he says, “My daughter-in-law had to shift to Delhi for the treatment of my grandson. She kept moving from one place to the other for better treatment.”
“I had to leave my textile business here to help her out. After a few years of struggle, I thought of coming back and opening a centre here in my house, so that many families like ours will not have to suffer, added Khanna.
Hence, the Global Institute for Childhood Disability on Lawrence Road here was founded to treat mental disorders such as cerebral palsy, autism, mental retardation and multiple disabilities. The authorities of the institute claimed that it is only centre which specialises in the treatment of cerebral palsy and autism. The centre comprises three rooms and different rooms are designated for the treatment of the disabled and there are five specialised healthcare providers, too. The centre, at present, has about 30 students for different sessions such as speech therapy, occupational therapy and neurotherapy.
“It is free for the poor as well the needy. People can come and get treatment; otherwise I charge Rs 3,000, which is less than what is charged in metro cities. But money is not everything, as fee is charged only from people who can afford it; otherwise the treatment is free of cost. I have people coming to me from aboard as well,” says Khanna.
At present around 30 students are taking their treatment classes, Nidhi Ohri, who is getting her seven-year- old son, Sanridh Ohri, treated at the centre said, “I was earlier living in Dubai, but came back to India last year. Treatment in Dubai is very expensive, here it is still easy.”