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HindustanTimes Thu,28 Aug 2014

Acid attack costs woman eyesight, job, husband

Shams Ur Rehman Alavi & Anupam Pateriya, Hindustan Times  Bhopal/Sagar, March 25, 2013
First Published: 13:06 IST(25/3/2013) | Last Updated: 13:07 IST(25/3/2013)

A woman schoolteacher in Sagar, who was the victim of an acid attack last year, has lost vision in one eye apart from sustaining scars on the face. The victim, Smriti Tiwari (21), was on her way to work when a person threw acid on her and fled. The acid fell on her chest, face and hand.

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Apart from the physical injuries sustained in the incident, the victim has lost her job and has been abandoned by her husband. Further, she can't step out because of the scars on her face and now remains confined to her house.

The incident occurred at Kesli in Sagar last year. She was rushed to the district hospital and later referred to Hamidia Hospital in Bhopal. Though the complete impact of the attack wasn't apparent initially, later on she lost vision in one eye and her skin was also badly damaged. The suspect was later arrested but released on bail.

However, for Smriti life is a daily struggle now. "My father is a farmer and doesn't have the means to get me treated at a good hospital. Still, he did his best," she said Smriti wishes to get good treatment and begin her life anew but financial constraints act as roadblocks.

"I remained in hospital for almost two months. I received no financial assistance from the government, not a single penny," she rues.
"My face has been disfigured and I don't step out of the house at all. So there is no question of going to work," she said.

"My husband and his family came to visit me at the hospital a couple of times but they were casual visits and they have now completely abandoned me," she added.
Even Smriti's voice is not the same anymore as the acid damaged her vocal chords. She speaks with difficulty and it's often tough to understand what she is saying.
Though Smriti wishes to reclaim her life, she knows that she wont be able to afford better treatment due to lack of funds. "It is perhaps my qismat (fate)," she concluded in a resigned tone.


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