Story of Jaskirat, who was born with Autism but now living a self-independent life

Jaskirat was born in the chilly winters of January 14th, 1999. He was raised in a joint family along with his other cousins. Initially, there were no overt behaviours but as soon as he turned three it was observed that he doesn’t even murmur a word. According to traditional thinking, everybody consoled by saying boys usually adapt speech late in comparison to girls. Being a mother didn’t let me accept the statement I consulted a pediatrician he suggested a psychologist.

We consulted a psychologist as suggested by renowned hospital, she took Jaskirat inside with her and performed an evaluation with the assistance of the interns. After the analysis, she very next day announced to us that Jaskirat has been diagnosed with ‘Autism’. No counseling procedure was carried forward with us being parents neither an explanation was delivered to us about how being a parent of special needs what should be our roles and responsibilities.

Jaskirat standing by some animal statues for a camera pose

Accepting the fact being a parent of special needs, I started taking knowledge and understanding about Autism from every resource available from human to technology which was a limited available resource at that time. One day, while I was surfing, I received answers to most of my questions when I got to know the first conference on Autism is about to held in India by Tammana School and in which with the fortune I could participate. The perceived knowledge and possible methods or techniques were applied on Jaskirat then we (parents) started taking him for the speech therapy sessions in VIMHANS. He was a fortunate child we could enroll him in the regular schooling from his playschool onwards as that time there was no much focus on the term inclusive education.

Jaskirat performed well in his academic settings despite his difficulty which became his strength due to his sharp memory. After 7th grade he found little difficulty coping up with the CBSE rules of writing answers about 150 words or so but, with the respectful support of the management, teachers

and other non-teaching staff of the school named Vandana International School, Dwarka it became possible for Jaskirat to progress from 1st grade until matriculation. There was no change in the question paper for him he had to attempt as the other students were but the only possible help he was received with was an extra hour to write the exam which was efficient and he has been able to pass his matriculation with good CGPA scores, during this I would like to add his academic counselor Ms. Preeti Sinha helped Jaskirat a lot to cope up with stress of time management.

After his matriculation, we (parents) observed that he is unable to take the pressure so we decided to discharge him from his academic settings and sent him to the special school. As he was pretty well in most of the subjects but in a special school, he got an opportunity to seek social and behavioral skills which lack in Autistic children. His school name ‘UDAI working together works’ introduced a multimedia program with its association with AIMS Media. For us, it was a cherry on the cake from which he not only learned the multimedia and other technical skills that gave him high self-esteem but also improvised holistically.

I am being a parent want to say it is proud to have a child with AUTISM as Jaskirat, says Rubin Kaur Duggal the mother. He is not different from any other child born! He now commutes from metro all by himself while handling the pressure of busy stations and heavy crowd, he also possesses a gift called Hyperthymesia due to which he tells the days of the dates naturally in the past and of fore coming years. He is a cricket lover and has great General Knowledge of sports and current affairs.

Writer, historian, and activist Dharam Sikarwar is a very active author The Youth. He writes on national and international issues, environment, politics. He is an avid book reader as well.