KOCHI: It is rare for a child with Down syndrome to overcome difficulties and achieve recognition. But Divya Sankar, a 15-year-old Class IX student of SNHSS High School Pullamkulam, North Paravoor, has triumphed over her disabilities to bag a national record. According to Divya’s brother Sarath Sankar, the recognition comes for the marathon two-hour bharatanatyam performance on December 23, 2018. “It was held at Dr Ambedkar Park at North Paravoor and my sister performed 10 elements of bharatanatyam without a break,” said Sarath.
“The certificate awarded by the India Book of Records reads, ‘Girl with Down syndrome performing bharatanatyam’,” said Sarath. The certificate also states that her record stands confirmed on July 5.
According to Sankaranarayanan, her father, Divya was helped a lot by her brother. “He believed in her and got us convinced about not giving up on her. He helped her in learning to talk and also finding the talented dancer in her,” he said. Sarath wanted everyone to consider her a normal kid and even persuaded his parents to get her admitted to a normal school, he said.
“Thanks to his perseverance, she was admitted to a normal school where a special teacher took care of her academic needs. When she was little, Divya couldn’t talk.
But after seven years, she not only talks but also has taken up singing,” said her father. According to him, these special needs kids have at least one talent hidden in them. “It is important to identify the talent and help them polish it.
Divya was lucky in getting good teachers both at her school and at the dance academy,” he said.Divya has been studying dance for the past six years. “She started at the age of eight. She could pick up all the mudras and is credited with helping the normal kids in the academy learn the nuances of dance,” said her teacher Seema Kannan of Amrithavani Nrithakala Kshetram at North Paravoor.