PRAKKULAM: Prakkulam, a remote village situated on the banks of Ashtamudi Lake in Kollam, has now grabbed national attention, due to the insatiable thirst for learning of a great-grandmother here at the age of 105. On International Women’s Day on Sunday, Bhageerathi Amma is all set to add a new feather to her cap with the Nari Shakti Puraskar for her extraordinary effort and will to clear the Class IV equivalency exam at this age.
Though she was pretty excited at being selected for the award, Bhageerathi Amma sounded disappointed that she cannot make the trip to New Delhi to receive the award in person owing to age-related ailments. “When the literacy mission coordinator approached me with the project I agreed thinking I can resume the studies which had to be given up at a very young age to support my family. But I never expected that my decision will prove an inspiration to several other women and bring me so many accolades, including this award,” said Bhageerathi Amma.
“I wanted to receive it in person but my age does not allow me to travel so far,” she added. The Kollam native’s attempts to clear the equivalency examination was also acknowledged by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his Mann Ki Baat radio programme last month. The state’s oldest equivalency learner, had scored 75 per cent in the exam. She has 16 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren. The entire district is celebrating the honour that has come centenarian Bhageerathi Amma’s way.