A documentary ‘Neglected Blood’ based on the Haemophilic patients- those whose blood is unable to form clot- was screened on Saturday by a local NGO at Srinagar’s Jehangir hotel.
The film by two social workers, Muhammad Saleem Malik and Showket-Ul-Islam, is about the struggle and endurance of patients suffering from Haemophilia, bleeder’s disease in Kashmir.
Both the film makers admit that they were not trained professionals. But they tried to capture the pain of these patients through camera to sensitize society about the plight of sufferers.
The documentary narrates the agony and pain suffered by the Haemophilic patients at length. A mother of five sons, Zareefa lost her four sons due to this disease. Besides, documentary also reveals the social isolation these patients undergo.
Tear jerking anecdotes feature in the film. The visuals of ‘Neglected Blood’ follow a sequential path without giving an impression that it is made by non media professionals. The narrative part of the documentary holds the grip of the viewers throughout.
“Patients initially didn’t cooperate with us,” said Showket who along with Saleem financed the documentary out from their own pocket money, “But after persistent persuasions, they give their nod for us to shoot.”
On the occasion, many patients suffering from this disease were present, besides doctors, media and other civil society members.
Manzoor Ahmad from Doda whose two sons were detected with Hemophilia in April 1996 spoke his ordeal of these years while dealing with the disease. “I took my sons to various health centres in and outside the Valley, but I was disappointed by most medicos by saying that my son’s case is hopeless,” he told the gathering.
Manzoor informed the audience that out of 18 haemophilic ridden children from his village, 12 expired while other 6 have been taken to local health centres by him.
Medicos on the occasion revealed that deficiency in coagulation factor VIII is the most common cause of haemophilia. A dose for a single day costs a patient Rs 20,000. “I have been treating these patients since 90’s and I can’t narrate the pain these patients undergo,” said Valley’s prominent hematologist, Dr Qadri.
Haemophilia is a group of hereditary genetic disorders that impair the body’s ability to control blood clotting or coagulation, which is used to stop bleeding when a blood vessel is broken. Haemophilia A (clotting factor VIII deficiency) is the most common form of the disorder, present in about 1 in 5,000–10,000 male births. Haemophilia B (factor IX deficiency) occurs in around 1 in about 20,000–34,000 male births.
The documentary informed that total number of Haemophilia cases have not been officially recorded, though medicos on the occasion put the identified cases of this disease at around 300 in Kashmir.