Heartbreaking Photo Of Grieving Son Raises More Than $90,000
More than four million rupees ($92,095) has been raised after a photo of a boy sobbing next to the body of his father went viral.
The photo shows an 11-year-old boy crying as he places his hand on his father's face in a crematorium.
"The boy walked up to his father's body at a crematorium, moved the sheet from the face, held the cheeks with both hands, just said 'papa' & began sobbing," Hindustan Times reporter Shiv Sunny said in the post shared to Twitter on Monday.
Sunny said the family of the man, who was a laborer in Delhi's sewers, were not able to afford the cremation.
A crowdfunding page was established quickly after by the Uday foundation which sparked an outpouring of support from social media users, including Bollywood actors and poorer families donating what they could.
In just over two days, more than four million rupees were donated to the grieving family and the post shared more than 12,000 times.
The boy's father, Anil, was a 37-year-old sewer cleaner in Delhi who fell to his death after a "weak" rope snapped as he was being lowered into a 20-foot-deep sewer.
According to the Ketto crowdfunding page, police said he died of asphyxiation after the fall.
Anil's passing came just one week after the death of his fourth-month-old son who died of pneumonia, Sunny told the BBC.
"I am a crime reporter and I have seen a lot of tragedy. But this was something I had never seen," Sunny said.
"I just wanted to draw attention to the deaths of sewer workers. It [the photo] told the story of the family's plight."
The funds raised will be used to provide an education for Anil's children, including the 11-year-old boy and his seven-year-old and three-year-old sisters.
"The real struggle for Rani begins now as Anil was the breadwinner of the family and with him gone, she has to look after three young children all by herself," the Ketto page reads.
"The funds shall be utilised for the education and well-being of the children and dignified life for the family."
By some estimates, about 100 sewer workers die in India every year, with Unions alleging this is the result of not being given proper safety equipment.