Eunuch breaks fresh ground, opens own school | india | Hindustan Times
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Eunuch breaks fresh ground, opens own school

india Updated: Aug 21, 2006 01:02 IST
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SHE WAS born ‘different’. However, instead of cursing her fate or ruing her lot, she charted an altogether different destiny for herself, bringing a sense of achievement to herself and the people around her.

Initially she did what other eunuchs generally do—  dancing and singing, asking ‘neg’ (offerings) on festivities. But this was not for accumulating money for a safe future. She had something else in mind – that is to run her own school one day. Today her dream has found fruition. Located at Bhuiphorwanath, where eunuch Rekha lives, nearly two-dozen young students are currently studying at her school. And the residents of the locality do not see her with derision but find in her a compassionate and tender heart instead.

“My parents, who lived in Gonda, were too poor to look after the entire family. My birth came as a great shock to them as the birth of a eunuch is never termed auspicious to the family,” she told Hindustan Times. “They brought me up for 14 years, during which I studied up to fifth level. Then I came to Lakhimpur and settled here adopting the traditional profession of the eunuchs.”

‘Since my childhood, I felt quite restless watching the helpless children loitering around in my locality. Whenever I was alone, my mind always looked for ways as to how I could contribute to the uplift of these helpless children,” Rekha said.  “Also, I felt I was meant to lead the life of a eunuch forever,” she said adding she never faced any monetary problems as her earnings from ‘negs’ were more than enough.

Then the idea of setting up a school for children struck her mind. But there was a problem – she did know how the neighbourhood would respond to a eunuch’s school. “To my sheer surprise, the society responded positively to my school, though with some initial hesitation,” she said adding, initially only two or three children turned up. I bought text books and other learning material for them.” However, the number has grown to a couple of dozen at present, Rekha said with a sense of pride.

A helping hand came in the shape of Poonam Tewari, somebody whom Rekha holds in very high esteem. Poonam is the one who teaches the students in Rekha’s  school.   Senior journalist Ashok Nigam told this correspondent that Rekha was bearing all educational and personal expenses of a child Suraj, who had lost his parents. He said Rekha had also got several other children admitted to recognised schools.

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