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Blind Belief: Hepatitis B infected man ostracised in Odisha village


KalingaTV News Network

Kendrapara: Over 85 per cent people of the total population in Kendrapara district of Odisha are literate, but a 55-year-old man has been ostracised and forcefully prevented from using public pond and tube well for the past two years in Atala village under Aul block.

The victim has been identified as Prabhakar Pradhan. He was harassed by the villagers after he being diagnosed with Hepatitis B in May 2016. The harassment was so intense that his wife left him and the village taking their two children to her custody.

Despite the social boycott, Prabhakar’s younger brother Kailash Pradhan has been supportive and is taking great care of the former. However, his biggest struggle has been acceptance by the fellow villagers and relatives.

The incident came to light on Friday, when Kailash approached the media and local administration to help his brother for further treatment.

Speaking to Kalinga TV, Aul Medical officer Dr. Manoj Senapati said, “It is unfortunate that Prabhakar Pradhan has been ostracised in the village only because he is infected with Hepatitis B.”

“Hepatitis B is spread through contact with the blood and body fluids of an infected person. A person cannot get Hepatitis B from casual contact such as hugging, kissing, sneezing, coughing, or sharing food or drinks with the affected person,” he added saying Hepatitis B is a curable disease.