Good News

Fulfilling career dreams of Covid warriors’ kids 

Sahaya Novinston Lobo

CHENNAI: Senthamizh was always fascinated by agriculture, and aspired to study it as a subject in college. But her parents, who work with the police department, were so busy with the Covid containment works that they could not help their daughter, who passed Class 12 this year, pursue her dreams.

A happy Senthamizh, flanked by her parents,
after receiving an admission letter to join college. (Photo | Debadatta Mallick, EPS)

The department anticipated that something like this would happen this year — as other priorities of the frontline warriors took a backseat. It made arrangements for Senthamizh and 122 others like her to pursue a career of their choice. Of them, 50 have been given a full waiver of their course fee.

The initiative is a brainchild of Police Commissioner Mahesh Kumar Aggarwal, who reached out to various institutions with a request for admissions to children of police fighting Covid. “I have never been away from my parents for so long,” says Senthamizh. 

“They sent me to our native village when the pandemic began. I guess they did not want me to be around them to save me from the risk of exposure to the virus. But, whenever I contacted them about college admission, they were busy.

The course I wanted to pursue have limited seats in a few colleges. I was worried I would not get admission by the time my parents get free.” Senthamizh’s father is a sub inspector; her mother is a constable. The Commissioner’s initiative revived the teenager’s hopes. She got enrolled for a B.Sc course in Plant Biology and Biotechnology. 

Giving fillip to cops by funding their kids’ education

The Commissioner’s initiative revived the teenager’s hopes. She got enrolled for a B.Sc course in Plant Biology and Biotechnology. “I am so happy now. My family has a small piece of land in Chidambaram. My dream is to do mixed farming there, including fishery, poultry, and horticulture — all organically,” says Senthamizh. For Pavurnika, who aspired to study Information Technology, her father testing positive for Covid came as a bolt out of the blue. 

“If not for the Commissioner’s initiative, it would have become very difficult for us,” says Pavurnika’s father Satish Babu, a head constable. “I had given my word to my daughter. But then there I was, down with Covid. Now, I still cannot believe that the entire fees of my daughter’s education has been waived.”

So far, 11 institutions in Chennai have come forward to help the children of police personnel with college admissions — a token of appreciation for their service to the society. “Gestures such as these will remind those working tirelessly that good deeds will not go unrewarded,” says Mahesh Kumar Agarwal, when asked about the initiative. So far, over 2,262 police personnel have been affected by Covid in Chennai, of which 1,800 have returned to active duty.

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