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Sabitha A tribal girl from Tamilnadu has entered one of the top engineering colleges in the country

Sabitha who studied in the Government Higher Secondary School at Velliangadu, scored 63% in the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) Mains

Sabitha/ Pic Credit- TOI

Tamilnadu/Coimbatore : beating all odds, a teen girl from Kaliyur, a backward tribal settlement in Velliangadu panchayat, has entered one of the top engineering colleges in the country. The opportunity has not come easy for M Sabitha

She often had to walk several kilometres every day, and find time to study after completing household chores and farm work. Sabitha, who studied in the Government Higher Secondary School at Velliangadu, scored 63% in the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) Mains, grabbing an opportunity to study in the National Institute of Technology(NIT) - Trichy. She is the first person from her school as well as her community to enter the NIT.

“I never thought I would end up studying engineering. All my life, I wanted to become a doctor and I have put in a lot of effort for it. The day NEET results were out and I found out that I did not make it, I was shattered. I had no clue what I would be doing in my life. It is only then my teachers made me apply for NIT as I had cleared the JEE mains examination,” said Sabitha.

She said she had applied for JEE examination only because of her teachers’ compulsion and she really had no interest in taking up an engineering course. “I had taken the examination without any additional preparation. Even though the question paper was in English and I had studied in Tamil medium, most of the questions appeared familiar,” she said.

“I am confident of passing with flying colours, but all I am worried about is paying fees, she said. Her annual fees come close to Rs 1 lakh. She has two elder sisters – both studying engineering – and a younger brother. Sabitha’s father own three acres of land at Kaliyur, a tribal settlement in Velliangadu panchayat, but the land remains uncultivated most of the year due to water scarcity. 

“Most of the days, my father does whatever work is available for a daily wage of Rs 200-250 and he is the breadwinner of the family,” she says. “This year, I have made arrangements to pay my college fees through sponsors. But I’m worried about the coming years. I hope I will not lose my opportunity to study because of financial constraints,” she said. The headmaster and teachers of her school has contributed Rs 25,000 towards her college fees.

“Nothing comes easy for the tribal students. They will always have to put in extra effort. We consider it as an achievement and hope it will inspire others. Over 25% of the students in the school are from the tribal community,” said her school teacher. With just five scheduled bus services to her settlement, she had to walk for over 3km to the nearest bus stand if she missed a bus at the scheduled time, the teacher added.

This Story appeared first on Times Of India.

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