‘Sometimes the things we can’t change end up changing us’ – is a quote that depicts the way gritty souls who are physically challenged face the world and succeed. It has become a routine in society to shower lip service on the physically challenged community. Also, protagonists of society quite often claim that it isn’t sympathy or empathy that the physically challenged need, but equality to lead a dignified life. No matter how society receives them, the physically challenged community is ready to face the challenges of reality head on. Many examples of such physically challenged overcoming disabilities to reach the pinnacle of success have been posted in Kalam Fan Club portal. Here is an exemplary persona Ms. Basanti Kumari, from the state of Jharkhand being put forth for readers. A lady who was born without arms but with shrewd guts and perseverance mastered the art of writing with her legs. Further, bagged a Para teacher role at Rorabandh Karmik Middle School, Jharkhand and rendering her service as a teacher since June 2005.
Family, Childhood & Education
Basanti Kumari is the eldest of five daughters born to a low-income family of Mr. Madhav Singh and Mrs. Prabhavati Devi. Madhav Singh was a foreman at Fertiliser Corporation of India-(FCI), Sindri and his wife a homemaker. Her parents were shocked to see a lump of meat in place of hands of their newly born baby. They visited all kinds of physicians and witchcraft doctors in search of rectifying their daughter’s arms but in vain. They opted not to send her to school as she was unable to use hands. But Basanti was the girl with a strong will who started mastering daily activities with her legs. Her parents who had begun homeschooling of this girl felt confident of admitting her to regular school at the age of six. Thus, she joined Rajendra Madhya Vidyalaya in Sindri and passed her X exams in 1993. She joined the intermediate course and on successful completion took up B.A in sociology honors from Sindhi College. In the year 1999, Basanti completed her graduation in second class. She is more contented with this accomplishment as she was able to carry out all her educational activities without depending on others and without taking any private tuition.
Circumstances Led to the Career of Para Teacher
By the time Basanti could complete her graduation, her father was affected by paralysis and also he had retired from FCI. Her brother Niranjan Singh who was also employed for FCI in supply department lost his job as FCI shut down its operations. All these incidences vested the burden of running the family on Basanti’s shoulders. She got a job after a long struggle in the year 2005 as a contractual Para teacher at Rorabandh Karmik Middle School. She opines that disability to use hands has not come in her way as a teacher. OneIndia News quotes her as “In 2005 when I joined as Para teacher, to write on the blackboard became a challenge for me,” she also has revealed to media with continuous practice and balancing her body, she was able to master the art of writing with a leg on the blackboard. She admits that God has blessed her with a more flexible left leg, though she is deprived of hands. She also manages to correct student class work, homework and exam copies with legs. The subjects taught by her are Mathematics, Sanskrit, Social Science and English. She enjoys every bit of teaching and expresses her apprehensions about losing a job due to Govt. policies of discarding Para teachers from roles. Her immediate goal is to look after her younger sister who is yet to get married while remaining three sisters have already settled.
Watch her story here:
Kalam Fan Club wishes this ever persevering soul a great success who has not only become a bread- winner for her family but also a source of inspiration to all those we feel disability has come in their way to realize their dreams. Also, hats off to her parents who stuck on to educating their disabled daughter while entire community around them suggested to discard her.