MADURAI: The scene: A class II girl, playing the role of a doctor in a drama at a government school. The girl leaves every spectator spellbound with her acting. She was not just acting, but was living her dream.
Years down the lane, the girl has now grown up and realised her childhood dream by earning a seat in Madras Medical College. Meet S Aashika Rani who secured State first rank under the 7.5 per cent horizonal reservation among Backward Class Muslim community.
Ask Aashika about her achievement, she would say her parents have always been a great inspiration. "In our community, most the families won't allow girls to study once they attain puberty. The fate of my mother is no different. Though both my parents have not completed Class VIII, they encouraged me to study," she said, adding she was the district topper among corporation school students in class X board examination.
Since her family is unable to afford sending her to private coaching centres, Aashika started preparing for NEET through State government's E-box coaching from Class XII onwards.
Her efforts finally bore fruit as she secured 351 marks in NEET, securing an MBBS seat in Madras Medical College. "The study materials of School Education department and model examinations helped me overcome the fear on NEET. Anyone can dream, but only a few realise it. I am very proud to be one among the few. I would like to become a cardiologist in the future," she said wearing a smile on her face.
The story of trials and tribulations of M Alex Pandi, who earned a BDS seat in Government Dental College in Cuddalore under the 7.5 reservation quota, is no different. A student of Government Higher Secondary School in Poosalpuram, Alex had to start supporting his family by working as a daily-wage agrucultural labourer from class 8 onwards after the death of his father.
Speaking to The New Indian Express, Alex said it was his school headmaster, Balakrishnan, and Physics teacher, Syed Ibrahim, who encouraged him to apply for NEET. "I was not having any big dreams. I just worked to help my mother, a construction labourer, make ends meet. Usually, I study from 10 pm to 11 pm and from 6 to 6.30 am. I enrolled in E-box coaching and it helped me a lot," said Alex who scored 238 marks in NEET.