Thusha Kamaleswaran, the little girl left paralysed in a wheelchair after being shot by warring gangs, has told how she dreamed of becoming a dancer – but is now too scared to go outside to face strangers.

By Hannah Furness
28 Mar 2012

**This is a heartbreaking story, and more needs to be done to help this little girl and her family. >>This related story has donation details for those interested.

Thusha Kamaleswaran (Photo: ITN)

Thusha, then five years old, was shot while dancing in the aisles of her uncle’s shop in Stockwell, South London last year.

Her attackers Nathaniel Grant, Kazeem Kolawole and Anthony McCalla, members of a gang, are now facing jail after being convicted of causing grevious bodily harm at the Old Bailey.

Her family, who say they will never recover from the tragedy, have been left in severe debt as they try to cope with the needs of the injured schoolgirl.

Thusha, who is undergoing intensive physiotherapy and faces a lifetime of pain, has now told of her fear that “someone will try to hurt me again”.

The little girl told the Daily Mail: “I cannot move.

“I really miss going to school. I miss my friends, the teachers and the lessons. Now I am stuck in the hospital in a wheelchair, learning to wheel myself around.”

She added that she misses her family and her mother’s cooking, because she must spend her weekdays in Stoke Mandeville Hospital, Buckinghamshire, for treatment.

She added: “I am scared to get into the car because of the strangers all around us. I worry that someone will try to hurt me again.”

The youngster, who took lessons in classical Indian dancing, told the newspaper: “I wanted to be a dancer. I wanted to learn dance properly, to take lessons.

“I am proud of how quickly I learnt. I really enjoyed it.”

Her mother Sharmila said she cannot sleep after the tragedy, and sees images of Thusha covered in blood when she closes her eyes.

Following the trial of her attackers, harrowing CCTV footage has been release showing Thusha playing by herself before being shot.

Within minutes of the gunshot wound to her chest, Thusha’s heart stopped beating and emergency surgery had to be performed on the shop’s floor to save her life.

When she was rushed to hospital, she again went into cardiac arrest and only the skill of the doctors performing emergency surgery saved her.

Her parents, originally from Sri Lanka, have now been told they are not eligible for a house suitable for Thusha’s new needs, and that there is no appropriate school place for her, the Daily Mail alleges.

Her 12-year-old brother Thusan could not go to school for a month following the shooting, while three-year-old sister Thushaika is still traumatised.

Her father Jeyakumar Ghanasekaram told the Mail: “Everyone is interested in the story of how Thusha was shot but for a year no one has been interesting in helping us cope with the aftermath.”