Aayi Ammal gifted her whole heart & a piece of land

Her only request to the government was to name the upgraded school after her daughter.
Aayi Ammal
Aayi Ammal(Photo | Express)

MADURAI: Learning acquired in one birth will help a person in seven”­— The verse from Thirukkural inspired Aayi Ammal alias Poornam to donate over two acres of her land to the state government for upgrading a local school in Madurai.

Poornam, a resident of Melur taluk, made headlines when she handed over 2 acres and 43 cents of land valued at `10 crore to the Panchayat Union Middle School in Kodikulam, in memory of her late daughter U Janani. On January 5, she donated 1 acre and 52 cents to her Alma matter and followed it up by donating another 91 cents on February 5.

The selfless act won her praise from several quarters and Chief Minister MK Stalin presented her with a special award during the Republic Day event.

Poornam’s story is of a woman championing the cause of education overcoming grief, hardship and unbearable loss. She lost her husband when Janani was an infant. Subsequently, she got her husband’s job on compassionate grounds.

“After my husband’s death, my only hope in life was my daughter Janani. She was my entire world. I started working as a clerk in Canara bank. Despite several challenges, I raised my daughter with utmost love and care,” says Poornam, fondly remembering her daughter.

U Janani, who passed away two years ago, was a BCom graduate and a social worker. She had extended a helping hand to underprivileged children of the locality. She had also helped visually challenged persons financially.

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In memory of her daughter, Poornam decided to register her land in the name of the local school. “I believe education is the only tool to transform society. I donated my ancestral land wholeheartedly to uplift the lives of rural children,” Poornam tells. Her only request to the government was to name the upgraded school after her daughter.

“My daughter wanted to become an auditor. I asked her to get married against her wish. After her demise, I totally collapsed thinking if I had allowed her to continue her studies, she would have been alive. I will fulfil her wish at all cost,” she says.

“The government has decided to upgrade the elementary school to a high school. I donated the land thinking it would be useful to students to get better amenities. Upgradation of school till class 12 will definitely create more IAS officers, doctors and auditors. I will be able to see my daughter Janani through the achievements of the kids of this school,” she adds.

Ever since fame came calling, Poornam has received over 50 letters from unknown persons seeking help. She also receives multiple calls of appreciation. “Nothing is in my hands, I believe. I accept whatever God gives,” she says.

(Edited by Adarsh TR)

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