Badly burned boy, five, asks Santa for a new face for Christmas

The little boy who wants a new face for Christmas: Five-year-old who was badly burned in a house fire says ‘I just want to be like other children’ in heart-breaking letter to Santa

  • Bakhtiyer Sindrov, five, suffered serious burns in a fire in Uzbekistan as a baby
  • His disfigured face has left him unable to eat properly or even go to school
  • He has written to Santa Claus, asking for a new face on Christmas Day
  • He says he just wants to go to school and for children not to be scared of him 
  • Bakhtiyer is currently undergoing reconstructive plastic surgery in India

A five-year-old boy who was badly burned in a house fire has written to Santa Claus asking for a new face for Christmas.

Bakhtiyer Sindrov suffered serious injuries when his family’s home in a village in Uzbekistan burned down when he was a baby.

This Christmas he wrote a letter to Santa, asking him to give him a new face so that he can be like other children and go to school.

Heartbreaking: Bakhtiyer Sindrov, five, suffered life-altering and disfiguring injuries when his family’s home in a village in Uzbekistan burned down when he was a baby

Yet unable to write, little Bakhtiyer, now living in Talgar in south-eastern Kazakhstan’s Almaty Region, dictated the Father Christmas letter to his father.  

The boy wrote: ‘Hello Father Christmas! I was burned when I was a little boy. I lost my face in the fire and since then I have to hide from people because they are scared of me.

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‘I am scared of myself when I am looking in the mirror. I do not have a nose, ears or hair.

‘My mum says that I will not go to school.

‘I am often in pain, but I do not cry. My mother does.

The five-year-old wrote a letter to Santa Claus, asking for a new face for Christmas so he could go to school and be like a normal child

Bakhtiyer, pictured last year aged four, has been unable to go to start school like other children his age as a result of his injuries 

Treatment: Bakhtiyer is pictured at an clinic in India, having his skin stretched for further plastic surgery which is taking place later this month

‘Father Christmas, give me a new face, please, I will never cry in my life then. I just want to be like other children.’

The five-year-old promised Santa he would ‘never cry’ if he got a new face

The letter was sent to ‘Ya ryadom’ (‘I Am Beside You’), a charity in the city of Almaty.

In the last year, Bakhtiyer has received medical treatment at the MedIndia clinic in India, with help from the charity and family and friends who have raised money.

Reconstructive surgery has given the boy new lips, teeth and eyelids. In July this year, doctors inserted implants into the boy’s neck to stretch his skin.

Later this month, his stretched skin will be used to replace parts of his face which were completely ‘melted’ in the fire.  

Bakhtiyer was a baby sleeping in his cot beside the fireplace when a blaze broke out and caused the terrible injuries.

For several years he could not open his mouth and he was fed through a tube that caused his teeth to rot.

Family friend Olga Ryabeva, who helps to raise funds for the boy’s treatment in India, said: ‘He was very little when his face, head, neck and shoulders got burned. He was basically melting alive.’

The boy’s face is so badly disfigured that his parents cover him with a blanket when they go out with him.   

  • If you wish to help  Bakhtiyer, visit Ya ryadom’s Facebook page 

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