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Fighting All Odds, This Determined Teen Excels In Class XII With 89.3%

  • IWB Post
  •  May 5, 2019

Since the age of eight, 17-year-old Shivani Sharma from Bhondsi, Haryana, has been going through a tough routine of getting up at 3 in the morning to cook for her family and complete the household chores like tending to the cattle and delivering milk before going to school.

Coming from an area where girls do not get an opportunity to study, Shivani paved a way for herself in order to achieve her dream of becoming an IAS officer. About five years ago, Shivani’s parents insisted that she quit school; however, after her persistent requests to let her complete her schooling, she made sure that her hard work paid off.

On Thursday, with the XII board examination results out, Shivani scored 89.3% in Humanities. “My father wanted me to drop out of school to take care of the livestock, as my mother was finding it difficult to handle the work when I was not around. My father was not in favour of wearing skirts to school and asked me to join a government school, where I could wear a salwar kameez. So, I used to leave home in different clothes and changed after I reached my school,” shared Shivani, who graduated from class 12 from Delhi Public School in sector 45. “Fear of additional expenditure and outside exposure on girls prevents families in Haryana villages from letting their daughters attend school. I hope it will be able to change this.”

To help Shivani pursue her education, Principal Aditi Misra shared that the school made her education and transport cost-free because Shivani excelled in sports and extracurricular activities. Last year, Shivani won a bronze medal in open boxing championship in the state and she was also a part of the school’s soccer team.

In order to pursue a bachelor’s degree in political science from Delhi University (DU), Shivani has now started working part-time at a local school to support herself. However, the challenges in her life do not end here, as convincing her family to let her attend college would be a tough deal to break. Talking about the restrictions that are imposed on girls in the area, Shivani’s mother shared, “Girls in Haryana do not get much opportunity to study. We have been very lenient with our daughter. We had only one condition that she would complete her daily household chores and then study. My in-laws and relatives are against sending their daughters out of station and want me to start looking for a boy to get her married.”

As Shivani now contemplates her next step, she recalled that she was often called a ‘cow girl’ by her friends at school because she would spend time with her cattle every morning. “They said I stank of cow dung. Coming this far was challenging. After the results came in, my teachers called me to the school and hugged me. I am now waiting for a miracle so that I can study further.”

H/T: The Hindustan Times

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