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'Hero Dad' adopts 22 HIV-infected children abandoned by their birth parents

22 HIV-infected Children Who Were Abandoned By Their Birth Parents And Left To Fend For Their Themselves On The Streets Of India Have Been Adopted By A Man From Mumbai.

News Nation Bureau | Edited By : Gautam Lalotra | Updated on: 02 Apr 2017, 11:25:32 AM
HIV - File Photo (getty)

New Delhi:

22 HIV-infected children who were abandoned by their birth parents and left to fend for their themselves on the streets of India have been adopted by a man from Mumbai.

Rajib Thomas, better known by his children as Papa Reji and to India as Mister India, was pained to meet a young homeless girl that was infected with HIV. He was entering a hospital as the young girl begged for food outside, according to a leading daily.

“It was the year 2007 when I met an HIV-positive girl outside a hospital and she asked me to get some noodles for her. I couldn’t get it that day but promised to come back again.”

A man who lived by his words and listened to his heart, Papa Reji went back the next day to find out more about the young girl and buy her the noodles she asked for. When he arrived, he was told that the girl did not survive the night.

“The next day when I went there, I got to know that the girl was no more. I was devastated after hearing the news, so it was then that I thought of doing something for these children.”

Rather than allow his mind to block the chance meeting with the young HIV-infected girl, Papa Reji chose to visit an HIV/AIDS specialist and learn more about the misunderstood condition. During the discussion with specialist Divya Mithale, Papa Reji made the decision to take in two HIV-infected babies and give them the proper love and care they deserved.

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First Published : 02 Apr 2017, 11:11:00 AM

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