Acid attack survivors are not only among women, there are 30-40% of the acid attack survivors are male. I am sure none of us has ever heard about male acid-attack survivors because the number of cases involving women are higher and most of us have always considered acid attacks to be a crime against women.
Let us meet the men who have survived acid attacks:
Two and a half-year-old toddler Aditya Raj is Delhi's youngest acid-attack survivor. He was kidnapped by his mother's lover and was found by police the next morning with burnt skin. He was in conscious state when police found him near a drain. Since then the toddler’s parents have visited many hospitals for his treatment. The child has been traumatised ever since the incident took place. He even sleeps with his left eye open because it doesn't shut anymore.
Firoz Khan, now 42, was 27-year-old when a neighbour scarred him for life. It was the day when an altercation intensified between neighbours and his younger brother He ran outside as it did not sound like just another neighbourhood scuffle. He saw his brother arguing with the neighbour and naturally came to his rescue. He asked him to go inside and within a second, the neighbour fetched a bucket full of acid and with a mug, started to throw it on him. Firoz tried to save himself from grave injuries by rushing towards a community hand pump. But the damage was already done.
Upendra Kumar, who is just 14 years old, fell prey to a neighbourhood rivalry born out of a petty fight when a family opposed their kids' friendship with him. One day, when he was coming home after playing with them, two men poured acid on Upendra, leaving him blind. Now his father is struggling for his education. His father is struggling everyday after work to teach him braille so that he can pick up studies but there is no help extended from the government so far for his education.
Mishra, a Meerut resident, was attacked with acid by his landlord's son, whom he allegedly prevented from molesting a woman a day before. He suffered almost 40 per cent burns with his head, face and hands worst affected. He underwent several surgeries and also treatment for reconstructing his face through plastic surgery.
Men cases generally go unreported, simply because most of the victims are women. But there are many like Aditya, a toddler who was left to die near a drain after his mother's jilted lover poured acid on his face and body or men like Firoz, who was watching TV casually when an altercation between his brother and neighbour turned scary.
The number of men victims may be less but they are equally serious and serious action should be taken by the government to give them justice. They also suffer from the same physical and mental pain.