KOLKATA: West Bengal’s famed Hindu temple preservationist Yeasin Pathan, who had been awarded the Kabir Puraskar for protecting 34 ancient Hindu temples at Pathra in Paschim Medinipur district for more than 40 years despite being termed ‘kafir’ (infidel) by Muslims and beaten up by Hindus for protesting theft of the temple bricks, is severely ill with heart and kidney blockages and needs your help.
Six year ago, the 64-year-old former peon was detected with a destroyed aortic valve in the heart and 90 per cent block in another valve and 72 per cent and 42 per cent blocks in two veins of the kidney.
Pathan had to rush to several doctors in south India and was finally told by doctors in Chennai that surgeries were out of question and could be life threatening. Since then, he has to visit Apollo Hospital in Chennai every six months for complete check-up and lead a life on medicines and a restricted diet. However, with even the West Bengal government turning away, Pathan is finding it difficult to carry on with the expenses of the treatment and seeks public help.
Speaking to The New Indian Express, Pathan, the founder secretary of Pathra Archaeological Preservation Society said: “Cardiologists at Apollo Hospital in Chennai ordered half-yearly visits for check-up
and said that without the check-ups, I could die any moment. Despite several requests, the West Bengal government has not helped. Hence, I urge the common people to help me survive this battle. I require some Rs 15,000 during every visit to Chennai which I am no longer able to pay after this six-year-long battle.”
“My battle for conservation of the Hindu temples at Pathra has also got stuck over the past three years due to Centre-state clash. The state government is not ready to hand over land to the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) which has taken over the temple clusters,” he added. Pathan has written several books on the Pathra temples in Bengali and even a Hindi-language 19-minute-long short film ‘Musallam-Imaan’ was
made on his life..