Kollam: A middle aged woman who was locked up by her own relatives for more than 20 years without any connection to the outer world has finally been rescued. The 48-year-old woman identified as Latha residing near Valathungal Government Higher Secondary School in Kollam municipality was shifted to Pathanapuram Gandhi Bhavan on Sunday night as directed by health minister K. K. Shailaja and women’s commission member Shahida Kamal.
The health minister informed the government will provide all medical care for Latha as she is mentally unstable. Latha was locked up in a single room hut built with cement blocks for the past 20 years. She used to survive on the food given by her sister Maheswari, who lives next door, through the window once in a day.
Soil, dirt and excreta were piled up in the room where Latha was living. The woman was rescued after Iravipuram police arrived in the presence of the women’s commission member and broke the door by Thursday evening. She was like a skeletal figure wearing torn clothes and tangled hair.
Latha is one of the seven children of late Chinnayyan Chettiyar and late Rajamma and had completed Pre-degree from Kollam SN College. Her husband abandoned her years ago and their 17-year-old only son is working in a footwear shop at Polayathodu.
Latha’s sister said that they locked up Latha to prevent her from running away and they used to give her treatment for mental illness earlier. Latha’s son lives in the house of her sister. Women’s commission has charged a case in connection with the incident.