“I will take good care of you, Uncle, I promise.”
23-year-old Thinagaran, a Malaysian-Indian man, together with his 71-year-old grandmother, Puan Kamala, both living in Kuantan, invited their 87-year-old Chinese neighbor to live with them. Though Thinagaran only earns a budget of RM1,500 to RM1,800 a month, this never bothered them while they stayed close together.
According to Sin Chew Daily, Thinagaran and his grandmother live in Kubang Buaya, Kuantan, on the second floor of a two-story terrace house they are currently renting.
Thinagaran works in the construction industry, earning RM50 to RM60 a day. Though this is not enough to support their daily household needs, he did not hesitate to invite Mr. Pak Cik Yap, or Uncle Yap, his elderly neighbor, to live in his home. The 3 developed a heart-warming friendship that lasted for more than a decade.
When he was a child, Thinagaran and his family lived in a wooden house together with Uncle Yap. He lost his father. However, their place was demolished a few years back so Thinagaran invited Uncle Yap to stay with him and his grandmother upon finding another place to live.
Uncle Yap used to take good care of Thinagaran and his sister when they were younger and was a father to them, he said.
“I grew up under his care. He taught me crafts and took me to school,” he said.
Thinagaran used to work in a tire shop. He resigned when he had an accident four years ago. Having to undergo surgery, wherein a steel rod was installed on his left foot due to a fracture, he had to stop from work because working in a tire shop meant doing so much bending.
He then worked as a construction worker, but his monthly wage was reduced from RM2,200 to as low as RM1,500.
His grandmother, Puan Kamala, gets a monthly government welfare assistance worth RM350. They pay their rent of RM400 a month, food expenses, and utility bills of RM100. Being a hard worker, Thinagaran works extra jobs just to make ends meet.
Luckily, both his grandmother and Uncle Yap are in good health condition. Although Kamala has minor asthma problems and Uncle Yap has weak legs, they are both strong and doing well.
Uncle Yap has never been married and has 2 younger brothers but both have passed away. He owns a red Identification Card (IC) since he applied for citizenship, but could not remember the name of his parents, hence, not given a full privilege.
Through the years, Kamala has been teased by people that Uncle Yap was her lover. She simply just shuns these ridicules for she knows it is not true, and she didn’t care what people thought about both of them.
Although the 3 of them are not blood-related, the friendship bond between these 3 people is more than family. True role models.
If you are interested in helping them out, you can contact Chen Chun Kuang (special officer to Semambu assemblyman, Lee Chean Chung) at 016-939 1220.