Ray of hope: Polio patient hires the differently-abled

Shafiq decided early on to not let his disability become a hindrance or excuse to refrain from work


LAHORE: Shafiqur Rehman, 44, was diagnosed with polio at the age of six months due to the unavailability of vaccination in his region and became paralysed by the infectious disease that affected both his legs.

No efforts of parents or doctors could have helped him after he became differently-abled. However, at a certain point in his life, Shafiq realised that he would not be able to spend his life normally.

He promised himself that he would neither let his disability become a hindrance nor use it as an excuse to refrain from working. Eventually, he started working on a monthly wage of Rs125 and his efforts led him to establishing a factory for the differently-abled.

Speaking to The Express Tribune, Shafiq said he does not want other differently-abled people to face hurdles and problems as he had to face throughout his life due to polio.

Polio case reported from Karak

As a result of this, Shafiq decided to provide work opportunities for differently-abled people and proved with his hard work that they should not lose hope and end up believing that they are incapable of doing something for themselves. “Some differently-abled persons negate themselves because of negative thinking instead of having a positive approach. This discourages others around them too.”

Shafiq further said that he has his private factory where wheelchairs are repaired and manufactured. “All the employees working in the factory are differently-abled individuals and they are also making other people skilled,” he said.

“Our business activities are usually designed for persons with disabilities who are striving for an honest earning,” he added. “All these people hired at the factory are no less than professional workers.”

Published in The Express Tribune, March 3rd, 2020.


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