Susmita Das and her son
Calcutta police on Tuesday offered Jhantu Ram Das’s widow a job, respecting a request from hundreds of elderly people whom the home guard had offered selfless service during his lifetime.
The offer to Susmita Das came after Metro highlighted how senior citizens in the Lake police station area collected donations for Jhantu’s family. Besides, they had written to the city police commissioner, Surajit Kar Purkayastha, to provide her a job to keep the family afloat.
Susmita was summoned to the Lalbazar police headquarters on Tuesday, where she met additional commissioner of police-III Debasish Roy.
He offered her a job with the green police unit after getting a nod from commissioner Purkayastha.
“We considered her application as special case. After consulting with the commissioner, we offered her a job with our green police,” Roy said.
Jhantu worked for Pronam, a joint initiative by Calcutta police and The Bengal, an NGO run by Sundeep Bhutoria, to provide assistance to senior citizens living alone. He was attached to Lake police station, where he died of cardiac arrest at the age of 32 on August 23.
Upon learning about Jhantu’s untimely death, a group of Pronam members close to the home guard wrote to the police commissioner on September 9, requesting him to “expedite the matter as a special case and provide suitable employment to the widow”.
Retired IAS officer Dilip Kumar Chatterjee, 79, had personally written to the commissioner and contacted Roy to press for a job for Susmita. He said he was delighted to learn about the police decision. “Jhantu was like a son to us and an exemplary member of the police force. I just hope that the police took care of Susmita and her son’s needs,” Chatterjee said.
Jhantu was the sole breadwinner of the family. His 25-year-old widow, who lives with her four-year-old son and octogenarian in-laws, said the job had come as a “relief”. The couple’s son suffers from hearing and speech impairment.
“I am thankful to the police for offering me a job in such a short time,” Susmita said.
Green police personnel are employed to aid the police in maintaining law and order and traffic. Like home guards, they are paid a daily wage.
Susmita’s application was sent to the office of the deputy commissioner of 7th Battalion, which heads the enrolment committee. “Susmita will now undergo training,” Roy said.