Bihar Boards 2019: Chapra girl uses toes to take Class 12 exam

These days at Chapra Zila High School, about 80 km away from Patna, which is an examination centre for Bihar intermediate examinees, there is a unique girl examinee, who unlike other students doesn’t use bench and desk to take the examination. She sits on a folded bedsheet to write the exam papers using her toes.

In the gaze of curious onlookers who are manning the examination centre, Ankita is deeply involved in solving tricky science questions. Daughter of businessman Ashok Kumar Gupta, Ankita’s both hands are polio affected, but this did not deter her from pursuing her studies.

“In 2002 when she was one year old, she suffered from meningitis. We admitted her to Patna Medical College and Hospital for 35 days. After she was discharged from the hospital, her both hands became useless,” said her uncle Shyam Gupta, who runs a general store at Harpur Bazaar.

However, this misfortune did not stop Ankita from studying. “She has taken physics, maths, chemistry and biology in intermediate. Since class one she has been very good in her studies and always punctual in school. She writes so legibly using her toes that those using hands will wonder,” said Shashi Bhusan Singh, SST teacher of Smt Uma Pandey Ramlakhan Das Project Girls High School, Harpur in Saran district, where Ankita studies.

Pandey said Ankita scored 70% in matriculation examination. “However, she did not get any extra financial help from the Bihar government to pursue her studies. Besides Rs 10,000, which she got under a government scheme for scoring first division in matriculation exam, a cycle under CM’S cycle scheme and dress, she has not got anything. As a humanitarian gesture, the teachers of her school paid her admission fees for taking admission in intermediate,” said Singh.

Ankita’s uncle Shyam credits her academic grooming to Manoj Pandey, who runs a coaching centre at Harpur Bazaar. “Pandey has been tutoring her since she was in Class 6. He taught her how to use toes to write. He has not charged a penny,” said Shyam.

Pandey, lauding Ankita said, “She is good in all subjects. Be it algebra or calculus, if you teach her once she can solve any tricky question. She can also even draw well using her toes.”

Shyam said she can sit for 12-14 hours at a stretch for her studies. “At times, we have to tell her to stop studies as it may affect her health,” he said. Shyam said the district administration issued her a certificate of 55% handicap after eight years of toil.

First Published: Feb 11, 2019 15:25 IST

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