For eleven years now, Sundar Raman has been carrying his wife on his back. Literally.
Every day, Raman lifts his wife Pradeepa and takes her to her office. After office, he carries her home. Whether it is shopping, sight-seeing or a family get-together, she is on his shoulders. Down with muscular dystrophy (a disease in which the muscles progressively degenerate and ultimately stop working), Pradeepa (34) needs his assistance for every move. But at 10 am sharp every day, she is present at her office at the Director General of Foreign Trade, in Thiruvananthapuram.
Distant relatives, both fell in love while still in school. But disease crippled Pradeepa when she was 15 and both separated for a while. Pradeepa completed her graduation and got a job with the Central Government as a Hindi typist at the age of 22. “We lost touch for many years,” says Raman. “I came to know about her plight only after I returned from the Gulf.”
Initially, says Raman, Pradeepa wasn’t willing to get married. “But finally, we decided to swim against the tide,” he explains their courtship. The couple has a 9-year-old daughter P. Anjana Ram.
Initially, Pradeepa was able to walk if assisted. Now, though, she is completely immobile. A good portion of her salary is used up for her treatment.
A full-time job was out of question for Sundar. But moved by their story, many have come forward to lend them a helping hand. Now, Raman is works with a car dealer in Thiruvananthapuram.