School headmistress from TN steps in to rescue flood victims in trouble

The students’ families also informed her of other families in dire straits, and that was how she helped Perumal and his family members on Monday.

Published: 30th November 2021 05:26 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th November 2021 05:26 AM   |  A+A-

Asha Devi rescuing flood-affected persons in Varma Nagar | M K ASHOK KUMAR

Express News Service

TIRUCHY: The  rescue of Perumal’s family members from their flooded house, also surrounded by the swirling waters of the overflowing Ariyaru, might not have happened but for the efforts of Asha Devi, headmistress of the panchayat union middle school in Pirattiyur village of Tiruchy district.

As news of the river water spilling over to the road and human habitations reached the headmistress, she, even though it was a holiday, rushed to the school to not just open its doors for providing refugee to the displaced people but also to call and check on her students, most of whom were from the flood-affected areas.

Any student’s family that was in distress told the headmistress of its plight and she, in turn, passed on the message to the Fire and Rescue Service personnel waiting to reach out to marooned people. The students’ families also informed her of other families in dire straits, and that was how she helped Perumal and his family members on Monday.

Several residential areas under Tiruchy city Corporation limits and bordering villages went under water, marooning many families in places like Iniyanur, Punganur, Nachikkurichi, Gowri Nagar, Varma Nagar, Kubera Nagar since Sunday morning. 

They were guided through the water by local people and among them was Asha Devi, one of the two teachers from Tamil Nadu who received the National Award for Teachers from the Union government two months ago. She had the mobile numbers of the families of many of the 916 students of her school and also knew the people personally. So, she started calling them one after the other to check if they were safe. 

Asha Devi said, “I went to Chennai on the weekend for an education committee related work and returned to Tiruchy in the mid-night. When I heard about the inundation, I came here in the morning to check. As I knew many people here, I just assisted the rescuing team in locating the marooned families.”

Karunakaran, assistant district fire officer, said “She teacher volunteered to help. It was a great support in identifying stranded families. While we were rescuing one family, she was already ready with the information about another marooned family. Her efforts saved our time.”



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