THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Up until then, they led ordinary lives, being just a part of the crowd. But on Wednesday, they were the cynosure of all eyes; the day that recognized the hard work and resilience of three elderly women in the city. You might all have passed them on the street, yet failed to give a second glance. But a group of engineering students decided that these frail faces and resolute souls were not meant to be ‘just another face’. Ahead of the Senior Citizens Day, they were honoured by the students of Government Engineering College, Barton Hill.
68-year-old Ramani opens her shop as early as two in the morning, serving tea in a shack near General Hospital junction. Vasumathi, an 88-year-old is a face which would be familiar for netizens, a short video that captured her cries to sell pappad in Chalai was heart-wrenching. Meanwhile, Cristeena’s ‘Food Point’ is the shop frequented by the engineering students.These three women faced a packed crowd at the mini auditorium of the college where they were felicitated. It was their day. They spent one hour with the students, interacting with them, making merry, and sharing the wisdom of their lives.
“We decided that instead of focusing on famous elderly personalities, we would felicitate those resolute and hardworking people who escape our eyes. They work relentlessly even at this age and we thought we should honour them,” says Prithviraj S, President of Velicham and a final year Information Technology student of the college.
The programme was organised by Velicham, a charity operating out of the college. “There are many in our generation who while away the time and chose not to work. By bringing such strong women to the forefront and highlighting the work they are doing, we were trying to celebrate and acknowledge the hard work the elderly put themselves into. It is something that needs to be emulated,” added Prithviraj.