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Separated 16 yrs ago, Punjab man reunites with family in Kota

Two-year-old Saarj Singh became emotional as he hugged his elder brother 35-year-old Daljit Singh at a shelter home named Apna Ghar
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By Aabshar H Quazi, Kota
PUBLISHED ON NOV 28, 2019 12:22 AM IST

A man from Punjab’s Kapurthala, who got separated from his family 16 years ago due to a mental illness, reunited with family in Kota on Wednesday, according to officials of a shelter home and district administration of Kota. 32-year-old Saarj Singh became emotional as he hugged his elder brother 35-year-old Daljit Singh at a shelter home named Apna Ghar in Kota after 16 long years.

Although Daljit, who is still under treatment for his mental illness, could not recognise his brother Saarj Singh. “We had given up all hope of seeing or meeting him in our lives as he has been missing for 16 years. But now, I and my family back home are happy. We will take Daljeet back to the village in Punjab,” said Saarj Singh. Daljit belongs to a family of farmers from Sultanpur village of Kapurthala.

Apna Ghar authorities handed over Daljeet to Saarj and his other relatives at the district collector’s chamber in Kota collectorate on Wednesday, where the collector Kota, Om Prakash Kasera, garlanded Saarj Singh and offered Daljeet with a shawl and traditional Rajasthani cap.

In the year 2003, Daljit, due to his disturbed mental state, left his home and ever since, there have been no trace of him until last year, when he was found by Kota police on the roadside in September, with filth on his clothes. Police took him to Apna Ghar, a shelter home for destitute people, said secretary of the shelter home Manoj Jain Adinath. For a year, Singh was at New Government Medical College hospital for psychiatric treatment, he added. “We were taking good care of him but his silence was troubling – he wouldn’t speak anything,” said Adinath.

Sarj Singh said they had searched for him in Ferozpur, Amritsar and other cities of Punjab for years. He said their father died four years after Singh’s disappearance. Daljit sister, and mother are anxiously waiting to meet him, he said.

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