Inspired by Kalam, girl from Noida battles disability to chase IIT dream in Kota
A girl, with stunted fingers and toes and battling lung infection, will appear in the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) Advanced on May 21.
Rachna Chaudhary (18), who is taking coaching here, secured all-India rank (AIR) 2072 in the persons with disabilities (PwD) category in JEE Mains, the results of which were declared on April 27. JEE is conducted for admissions to undergraduate engineering and architecture courses.
Rachna’s mother, a native of Kalsi village in Bihar’s Darbangha district, works as helper at a private company in Noida.
Rachna, who idolises former President APJ Abdul Kalam, fights odds to become an engineer.
She wrote JEE Mains with her stunted fingers on left hand. “As I don’t have fully developed fingers and thumb in both hands since my birth, I write examinations adjusting the pen between the underdeveloped thumb and index finger of my left hand,” said Rachna who is around 70% disabled.
“Due to lack of fingers, I cannot even tie my hairs and hold heavy things, but the dream to crack JEE inspired me to pursue studies,” she told HT.
“I cleared Class 12 and JEE Mains last year, but could not crack JEE Advanced. I could score only 62.8% in Class 12. I decided to come to Kota for coaching to improve my Class 12 marks and JEE Mains ranking, and also crack JEE Advanced.”
Her mother brought her to Allen Career Institute of Kota for admission; she got 50% concession in fees and relaxation in hostel charges.
Ahead of her JEE Mains, Rachna became ill in February. “My mother took me to Delhi for treatment; I was detected with lung infection and hospitalised. Doctors gave me special treatment after which I was able to write JEE Mains,” she said.
“Even after appearing in JEE Mains, I fell ill again and was hospitalised in Delhi till a few days ago,” she said.
Her father Sanjay Chaudhary is bed-ridden with psychiatric disorders at their single-room rented house in Noida for the last 6 years. Her younger brother Vishnu (16), studying in Class 10, is suffering from cerebral palsy. Her youngest brother Raj (10) is not handicapped.
“My mother earns about ₹10,000 a month to meet expenses, including house rent and education of her kids,” she said. Her mother sold her gold earrings for her education. “I want to become an engineer to help my mother and family,” Rachna said.
Allen Career Institute director Naveen Maheshwari said, “We wish that Rachna will come out with flying coluors in JEE Advanced to fulfil her dream.”