Sashank Vaiibhav Allu, an alumnus of IIT Madras, was all set to go for his Masters from a top notch U S University in 2012. A few weeks before departure, he fell off the balcony at home. This left him paralysed neck downward with a cervical spine injury.
As his parents were doctors, they ensured he received quality basic care that prevented more damages that are usually common in the early weeks.
At the farewell function for Dr Suranjan Bhattacharji in March 2009, former Director of Christian Medical College, Vellore, his views on Dr Mary Verghese - trailblazer who envisioned rehabilitation for spinal cord injured persons in India - were read by Sashank, who was undergoing rehabilitation at that time following a cervical level spinal cord injury.
Thanks to invaluable guidance from a family friend, Sashank came to Christian Medical College (CMC),Vellore early in December 2012. In a couple of weeks, he was at the Mary Verghese Institute for Rehabilitation in the Bagayam Campus of CMC, Vellore.
Starting off completely dependent, in about four months, he attained levels of independence that are matched by only a few other persons with cervical level spinal cord injury in India.
While training there, he started writing a blog Quadriplegic Chronicles with the tagline How I Relearned Living. No spinal cord injured person in India has mustered the acceptance and courage to start writing about their life after a spinal cord injury so early.
His independence levels keep rising and he is all set to go to the University of Purdue for a Masters in Mechanical Egineering. He hopes to do his Ph D and move into research that would help the physically challenged. We are proud to have Sashank push for, design and develop the website of The Spinal Foundation in a two-week span.
Link to access the blog: