A family in Penang is pleading for a public housing unit after being forced to stay in an old car since their home burned down eight months ago.

As a security guard, S Ganesh, 34, only earns about RM1,200 monthly, and he cannot afford even a small flat unit to call their own as the rental can cost up to RM800 a month.

The family home was burned down on April 6, with only the clothes on their back, following which the family was temporarily placed at a school hall.

Now, Ganesh and his wife Parameswary, 32, together with their three daughters aged between eight months and six years, call their 30-year-old Proton Saga their home. For the youngest girl, the car has been her home her whole life.

Parameswary even spent her confinement period after giving birth to the youngest child, and looked after the elder two, in the car.

"After the fire, we received some hampers and contributions, people came to give us good, took some photos, but that was it. After that, we were forgotten," Malay Mail quoted Ganesh lamenting.

According to him, he had applied for a Program Perumahan Rakyat (PPR) unit with the state Housing Department back in April, but have not heard from them since.

The family uses public toilets to bathe and do laundry, and a portable gas stove to cook meals, which is mainly plain rice with salt as seasoning, and sometimes, instant noodles.

Eating plain rice with an egg happens when the family has enough money, while "luxury" is having a piece of chicken with the meal.

There have been days where the family has gone a day or two without food, where the children are only fed dry biscuits dipped in diluted coffee.

Ganesh parks the vehicle, which keeps breaking down, near his workplace when he is on the night shift, so that he can watch over them. During day shifts, the car is parked near public toilets around George Town.

Despite their condition, Ganesh is not pleading for funds from the public. All he's asking for is a PPR unit to live in, as it is not safe for his wife and kids to spend nomadic lives when he is at work.

Meanwhile, Malay Mail quoted Penang Hindu Association (PHA) president P Murugiah saying that the organisation has helped submit the necessary documents to expedite Ganesh's application, two days ago.

Those who wish to help Ganesh and his family can contact him at 011-36779438 or PHA treasurer Nookaraju at 012-4072846.

Source: Malay Mail
Photo source: Malay Mail