Home India News Swapna wrote with her feet to pass exams

Swapna wrote with her feet to pass exams

By Sujit Chakraborty, IANS

Agartala : A physically challenged girl in Tripura has passed her Class 10 board examinations by writing with her feet. And although the gritty teenager wants to keep studying, poverty is proving a hindrance.

Born with a deformity that prevented both her hands from functioning, Swapna Biswas, 17, of Uttar Nalichara village in Dhalai district, about 100 km from here in this northeast Indian state bordering Bangladesh, fought her way through life without letting the disability prevent her from leading as normal a life as possible.

Swapna used her feet to do all daily chores, from cooking to fetching water, and learnt to write by holding her pen between her toes. Naturally, she was jubilant when she secured a second division in the Class 10 examinations.

"I want to pursue my studies as I have eyes and can write with my feet," Swapna told IANS.

But abject poverty has forced her to sell puffed rice on the streets instead of seeking admission in a college.

Swapna lost her father, a daily wage earner, when she was a child. And the girl's mother says the family is too poor to fund Swapna's higher studies.

"I don't think it would be possible for me to help her continue with her studies as we have no financial support. I am sick and cannot earn," said Pramila Biswas.

When the Total Literacy Campaign began in her village, Swapna availed herself of the opportunity to become educated. The entire village stood by her as she began to prepare for her board exams.

Now many want to help her continue with her higher studies.

"District Literacy Mission officer Sailesh Acherjee played the key role in turning Swapna's dreams into reality by providing all possible help to this strong willed girl," said Laxman Deb, Swapna's neighbour.

"She has made us proud and we shall do whatever is required to make her pursue higher studies. Money should not be a problem," he added.

Swapna, however, has her fingers crossed. "I am grateful to everybody, and I'm sure I'll be able to go to college one day," she mused.

(Sujit Chakraborty can be contacted at [email protected])