Kolkata: A vegetable-seller under Park Circus footbridge now the recipient of PadmaShree award. Yes, it is the story of unsung hero who dedicated her life to help the poor, serve the patient. She is one of those who realize the poor’s condition on treatment expenditure and value of treatment. She is none other than Bengal’s proud Subhasini Mistry who have been conferred with Padma Shree 2018.
Subhasini Mistry, a poor lady from rural West Bengal, who toiled 20 years as domestic help and daily labourer to build a hospital for poor in the State. At 73, she can look back with satisfaction at a two-stored, whitewashed building, the realization of her dream to build a hospital for the poor – all because she couldn’t afford proper medical treatment for her husband and became a widow at 23.
Subhasini was grief-stricken after her husband died, but she resolved to build a hospital for the needy so that others would not have to suffer the same fate as her husband. What followed was a life of abject poverty and extreme physical labour as the mother of four soldiered on with the single-minded pursuit of setting up the hospital.
Over time, she managed to save enough to buy a one-bigha (one-third of an acre) plot. Now 47 years down the line, Humanity Hospital, in Hanspukur village near Kolkata, stands tall and proud, serving the poor free of cost since 1996, a testimony to a single woman’s grit, determination and never-say-die spirit against all possible odds.
Through her tears and fears, Subhashini made an oath that no one should suffer for treatment. A silent promise change the nightmare of poorer. Through all this growth, Subhashini was clear about her goal. This was a hospital for the poor.
This was not a business. Yet, she knew that the hospital had to be self sufficient. It cannot survive forever on donations. Despite the tough road ahead, Subhasini Mistry refuses to be benned down.