A Story in Favor of Courage and Compassion

A Story in Favor of Courage and Compassion

27Life has remained beautiful and normal for Romit Shah who hails from one of the most modern Indian city Baroda also known as Vadodara. A very vibrant young engineer Romit, like many also dreamt of an Australain life.
Romit is married and accompanied by his wife Dipti Patel. Romit and Dipti Successfully managed their entry in Australia, in 2006 and started pursuing their master’s degree.

They started their normal life in beautiful Queensland’s capital Brisbane. As normally all hard working people do, they both worked to support their higher education cost and started enjoying Australian way of life.

Romit is also very active at social front always ready to help people around. Over the past 5 years, Romit has been actively involved in many fund raising charity events to name a few are “starlight children”, “make a wish drive”, and “McGrath foundation” through his job at Caltex. His wife Dipti also has been always active at various fronts of social life. She has always willingly and voluntarily provided her magical voice to many social events.

But as they says who knows the next? Destiny has took it’s turn, Romit was diagnosed with Chronic Myeloid Leukemia (CML) in April 2011.

Romit had to quit his study and concentrated on full recovery. But he was determined to defeat Cancer. He became stronger than ever he was and continued his day-to-day life without much of drama. Not only Romit managed to clear his Masters of Environmental Engineering degree from Griffith University with glaring grades GPA of 5.5 out of 7. Needless but worth mentioning Dipti, his wife stood as rock besides him and demonstrated as a young couple how to live with cancer without much drama.

Romit indeed is living an exemplary life and showing human resilience against cancer. Not only he completed his masters but also he continued part-time casual work to meet the ends. He took part-time voluntary work at Cascade Australia Pty Ltd, where he was instrumental in developing Environmental Management Systems that helps to reduce the adverse impacts on Environment from manufacturing units. Cancer could not do anything to Romit’s spirit to live normally.

Romit has spent his 9 prime years in Australia, and he has always lived as law-abiding immigrant in Australia, and has embraced Australian way of life and culture.

While entire world and Australia is united against the fight against cancer, surprisingly denial of his PR or Permanent Residency based on his ailment, cancer is not only shocking but also emotionally toiling on very young family of Romit and Dipti.

They otherwise have all the ticks in their favor to live and work in Australia permanently.

Is this not surprising and disappointing that it is a mistake from otherwise very positive truly humane Ozzie spirit? What if he would have been diagnosed with cancer at later stage? Are we not indirectly helping cancer to win over humanity? Is cost of treatment only a real concern? What about his brave fight and he becoming an example for many living with this aliment?

Despite the fact that Romit is eligible for Medicare since 2011 and he has Medicare card still he has not put burden on system yet and paying his medication from his and wife’s hard earn salary. While our Romit of is willing to work and not only live normal life but willing to meet the cost of his treatment from his pocket.

Romit has a type of leukemia that can be treated with targeted drugs called Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors (TKIs). Inventions of such drugs have led to extreme increase in patient’s survival rate and life expectancy. The CML patients such as Romit can live a good quality life with just a consumption of such medication with no restrictions for work. Regular treatment with TKIs can lead to medication free life for a patient after achieving favorable results.

According to blood reports provided by PA hospital, he has some significant improvements since the diagnosis i.e. 3 log reduction in BCR-ABL result analyzed through quantitative real-time PCR. The initial result recorded was 49.856 % BCR-ABL ratio in August 2011 and it has decreased down to 0.21% in April 2015 with continuous improvements. This is only possible when the treatment with the prescribed medicine Nilotinib (Brand Name – Tasigna) is continued. With Romit’s current medical situation, there is a possibility of complete remission in disease and getting off the medications.

If Romit and Dipti will have to leave Australia, their home for almost 9 prime years, then both and Romit will have lots of psychological effect and it may aggravate his cancer. What about his wife Dipti? How can her right to live and work permanently in Australia be taken away, just because her life partner is diagnosed with Cancer? Why let negative of Cancer win over a young, affable and loving family, society and humanity, and why add in Dipti’s “stress” by unjust denial to live and work in Australia where they have lived happily for last 9 years?

Why not give them a chance they truly deserve from life and from Australia their home for last 9 years. Why not give Dipti and Romit a chance to show how to survive with cancer and how to defeat cancer and lead to an absolute normal life.

Dipti is more than capable individual to take care of her family life and just needs positive and humane approach to their right to live and work in Australia permanently.

Whether we are trying to defeat cancer or the victim, the question persists. If you feel it is unjust, sign up the petition and support this cause.

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