Faizan wears a cast to support his right foot | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint
Faizan wears a cast to support his right foot | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint

New Delhi: Mohammad Faizan, a 14-year-old from Kardampuri area in Delhi, was shot in the back during the communal riots that took place in the capital city in February. After nine months of therapy and treatment, Faizan is now able to walk again.

He stepped out of his house on 25 February to go to a shop nearby, unaware of the violence that was unfolding outside. Soon, he found himself running with a crowd and was shot at by unidentified persons. The boy was rushed home by some passersby.

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He tries not to put pressure on his foot | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint
Faizan walks slowly, careful to not put too much pressure on his feet | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint

He was taken to the GTB Hospital several hours after he was injured, where doctors told his family that he had suffered nerve damage. They were unsure if Faizan would be able to walk anytime soon.

On 25 Februrary, Faizan was brought to the main road on a cart | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint
Faizan was carried from his house in a cart the day he was shot | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint

The 14-year-old was on bed rest for three months, during which time he also underwent physiotherapy. Eventually, he began walking slowly. Today, the teen is still unable to entirely exert his body weight on his feet, especially his right leg, and wears special shoes to support it.

Faizan faces difficulty keeping his feet on the floor evenly | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint
Faizan faces difficulty in keeping his feet flat on the floor | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint

When he was 11 years old, Faizan left school due to financial problems. Now, with the help of an NGO, he has been able to go back to his studies. This is his first week of online classes.

He has started taking online classes | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint
Faizan studies at home, taking online classes on a mobile phone | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint

Faizan and his brother were brought up by their grandmother Amna Khatun. While his brother works at a shop in Chandni Chowk, Faizan used to help his grandmother with her stitching work at home.

Both Faizan and his grandmother are dependent on his brother. The family’s financial situation turned for the worse during the lockdown when his brother was unable to earn.

He was shot in the hip area | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint
Deep scars on Faizan’s back mark where he was shot | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint

Faizan told ThePrint that they received some help after the riots but the lockdown that followed soon after made things particularly difficult. The family had little to eat and were also in debt.

Faizan said he wants to normal shoes again, he fears this support will be permanent | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint
Faizan says he waits for the day when he can wear ‘normal’ shoes again | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint

As a victim of the riots, Faizan is due to receive Rs 2 lakh as compensation from the Delhi government. However, he is yet to receive the entire amount. “We were promised Rs 2 lakh, but so far we have only received Rs 20,000 when Faizan was in the hospital,” said Amma Khatun.

Remembering the riots, Faizan said he still fears leaving his house.

Faizan stands in the lane of his house | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint
Faizan outside his house in Delhi’s Kardampuri | Photo: Manisha Mondal | ThePrint

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  1. We are all extremely sad for 14 yr old faizan. We wish for his speedy recovery. Was faizan the only case though which caught your pseudo secular attention? Was there no rahul, sanjeev, rajeev, dheeraj whobgot killed or maimed in these orchestrated riots? Did u feel the need to write a follow up on that young IB officer whose body was thrown after mutilation in a nallah by beacons of secularism? Why not? Were they lesser human beings? Is their tragedy lesser than the 14 yr old faizan? Why tgey didn’t find a place in ur headline?


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