A mentally ill man who had been chained up for 17 years has finally been freed and is now receiving treatment in southern China’s Guangdong province.
Xu Guofa, 56, was found to have a mental illness in the early 90s after several violent rages and arson attacks.
His older brother, Xu Guojun never left him and stayed with him in Fengshun County for over 20 years, hoping he would find a way of curing his illness.
Xu Guofa, had had his feet chained for 17 years and stayed in a shed in southern China
His brother had no choice but to lock him up to prevent him hurting the neighbours
Following media attention from Guangdong news outlets, Xu was invited to Meizhou Rong Jun Hospital and received free treatment on August 29.
A set of images show Xu walking out of a shed that had been his home for the first time in 17 years.
According to Sina, Xu’s older brother took responsibility for looking after him in 1984.
Neighbours demanded the Xu family keep him lockd in chains after they felt threatened by Xu’s bad temper.
The low-income family had now choice but to lock him up in order to keep him away from the crowd.
Xu’s feet were chained together and he was kept locked in a shed where there was no furniture or household goods.
Freedom! A hospital offered free treatment to Xu, he can finally set free from the rusty chains
Xu was given clean clothes after a shower and had his nails cut before a check-up
Meizhou Rong Jun Hospital offered free consultation and treatment to the mentally-illed Xu
But his older brother, a freelancer working at construction sites, vowed to take care of Xu.
‘He can take care of himself normally, but he can go crazy when the weather goes bad,’ Xu Guojun told the reporter.
‘He will throw and smash the bowls and starts shouting out loud,’ added the older brother.
Xu’s story was soon reported by Meizhou television.
Meizhou Rong Jun Hospital and representatives from the town visited the Xu brothers on August 29.
They offered Xu a free assessment and treatment plan for him.
Xu agreed and had his shackle chains removed from his ankles.
Zheng Qingshui, head of Meizhou Rong Jun Hospital, confirmed: “We will give him a full check-up first, before coming up with a rehabilitation plan.”