From New Jersey to City via Suresh Gopi

City student Namitha Sreekumar suffers from Ataxia. Her hope to dance someday is kept alive by a kind gesture from the USA

Published: 23rd August 2014 06:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 23rd August 2014 05:30 AM   |  A+A-


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Ataxia is a condition with no known allopathic cure, in which the muscles do not obey one’s commands. But city student Namitha Sreekumar, who is Ataxic, hopes that one day she would be able to dance, reining in her unruly muscles. And a kind gesture from New Jersey might have served to keep her hope alive.

 Namitha received a cheque of Rs 25,000 from Unnikrishnan Nair working in New Jersey, and it was handed over to her by actor Suresh Gopi on Friday. The actor had talked about Namitha at an NSS meeting in the US. Unnikrishnan, whose book was being sold at the meeting, responded by offering the money collected from the book sales to Namitha.

 Suresh Gopi says, “I did not talk about Namitha at the meeting with the intention of pushing for any donation. It so happened that I turned into a messenger.”

 Suresh Gopi happened to know about her, when he came to her school, Raja Kesavadas NSS HSS, for a programme. The councillor had taken him to the IED resource room to meet the children who did not join the school assembly. Seeing Namitha, a class 9 student, the actor had then donated a cheque of Rs 25,000.

 Namitha’s father, who works as a medical representative in Mumbai, is the lone earning member in the family.

Once a week, Namitha needs to be taken for an Ayurvedic therapy in Palode. With her body shivering uncontrollably, it is difficult for her mother to take her there in a bus or train. The cab fare from Thiruvananthapuram to Palode costs more than the therapy itself.

 Her class teacher Preetha says, “She is attentive. She laughs when we read out the funny excerpts from the English textbook. But she cannot write. Her classmates help. A lot of times her mother writes down the notes.”

 Namitha’s IED Resource Teacher Lisy L says, “She is loved by everyone. You should see how eagerly they fetch her chair. Namitha loves to watch her friends dance. If she places a request for dance, no one refuses it.” Some day, she herself might just dance.


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