Indore: Pak-returned Geeta saddened by ‘father figure’ Edhi’s death

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Indore
  • Updated: Jul 10, 2016 18:22 IST
Foreign minister Sushma Swaraj with Geeta in Indore. (Shankar Mourya/ HT file)

The death of Pakistani social worker Abdul Sattar Edhi, has come as a shock for hearing and speech impaired Geeta, who had been given shelter by the social worker’s Edhi foundation during her 15-year-stay in Pakistan.

Geeta had strayed into the neighbouring country when she was around 12 years old and was brought back to India last year. She has been staying at the Indore Deaf Bilingual Academy (IDBA) since last October.

IDBA manager Monica Punjabi said Geeta was taken aback by Edhi’s death, who was a father figure to her. “She recalled that Abdul Sattar and his wife Bilkis Bano had taken care of her as their own daughter and showered special attention on her,” Punjabi said.

The IDBA manager said Geeta told her that Abdul Sattar had even made a small temple for her so that she could continue her faith.

Geeta has expressed her desire to interact with Sattar’s family members through skype. “We will make all the arrangements,” Punjabi said.

So far several attempts have been made to trace Geeta’s parents, but no success has been achieved. Some couples did claim her to be their daughter, but they didn’t stand to scrutiny.

Recently, Geeta made a request that she should be allowed to travel by train all over the country in the hope that she would be able to recognise the place from where she boarded the train before being separated from her parents.

Ninety-two-year-old Edhi died after facing respiratory problem during dialysis due to his frail health.

External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj also condoled the death of the Pakistani philanthropist. “I express my deep sense of grief on the demise of Abdul Sattar #EdhiSahab. He was a noble soul who dedicated his life in service of mankind,” she tweeted.

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