Some days ago, the image of a middle-aged man from Kerala, who was lying down on the seat in the Kochi Metro went viral on social media. Eldo, who is a speech and hearing-impaired person, had lied down on the seat as he was tired, but his photograph was circulated on social media and he was wrongly dubbed as a drunkard.
With the Kochi Metro having been inaugurated just days before this incident, Eldo's photograph received much criticism on social media, with many people saying that "people like him" were an utter disgrace to the state.
On Friday, another photograph of Eldo, a native of Angamaly, went viral on Facebook. But this time, Eldo was not made the butt of internet trolls, neither was he termed "Kerala's Paambu."
Instead, in the photograph, a smiling Eldo was seen receiving a Metro pass from Kochi Metro Rail Ltd. (KMRL) MD Elias George.
He was given a free metro pass worth Rs 2000 by KMRL.
"KMRL wants to acknowledge Eldo, who was subjected to ridicule because of people's preconceived notions. People jumped to conclusion that he was a drunk man, but instead he is a speech and hearing- impaired person," a post on KMRL Facebook page reads.
After receiving the pass, Eldo took a ride on the metro, this time, with camera lenses focussed on him in admiration.
After the photo of Eldo lying down on the seat went viral, his family had revealed the truth to the media.
Speaking to Manorama, his son Basil had said, “My father, mother and I went to the General Hospital in Ernakulam to meet his brother who was admitted. I told father that we should ride in the Metro for the return journey since it was new.” Basil spoke for his father since his mother also is speech-impaired, and said that his father was tired and upset, so he was lying down.