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Pune wastepicker’s daughter scores 74% in Class 10 SSC exam

A wastepicker by profession, Rahim and Shayera's daughter Muskan had secured 74 per cent in the class 10 SSC exam.

pune Updated: Jun 16, 2017 00:36 IST
Ananya Barua
Ananya Barua
Hindustan Times, Pune
Muskan Shaikh’s interactions with her teachers has convinced her to become a teacher herself.(RAVINDRA JOSHI/HT PHOTO)

After the declaration of Secondary School Certificate (SSC) class 10 results, many were overwhelmed with joy and emotion. But for the Shaikh family who stays in the narrow by-lanes of a slum near Yerwada, it was a much bigger affair. With a daily wage of Rs 400, Rahim Shabir Shaikh and his wife, Shayera Rahim Shaikh had chosen to spend it first on the education of their two children.

"Education is the only thing that can uplift them and the future generations. No matter what people say, I will always try my best to educate them," said Shayera.

A waste-picker by profession, Rahim and Shayera's daughter Muskan had secured 74 per cent in the class 10 SSC exam. Unlike most girls in the neighbourhood, she had big dreams about her future.

"Her father is not educated, but she wants to study more. We will support her and help her achieve her dreams. I don't want to force her to get married like the other parents in the neighbourhood," Shayera added.

Muskan also has her own set of dreams. Her interactions with his teachers had convinced him to choose it as a career.

"I love studying. But when I’m not, I either cook or play with my brother and sisters," said Muskan, who wants to take up the humanities stream in class 11, and later pursue language studies. She had scored the highest in Urdu amongst all her subjects.

On being a role model to her siblings and the girls in the neighbourhood, she said "My family’s support helped me become the person I’m today. I’m lucky that they think differently and help me dream of a career."

Her younger sister wants to become a doctor, while her younger brother is more interested in cricket.

" My son is interested in sports, while my daughters want to pursue higher studies. While many choose to educate their sons over their daughters, I do not agree with this mentality. All are the same for me. I use my daughter Muskan as an example for my son and ask him to aspire more like her sister," said Shayera.

Omkar Ashok Chavan is yet another student with many big dreams. His mother, Jayabai is also a waste-picker and a single parent who works day and night to support both her sons.

Omkar, who studies at Madhyamik Vidyalaya Khadalwadi, came third in his class with 76.20 per cent marks in SSC in Pimpri Chinchwad. Though he is a cricket enthusiast, he eventually wants to become a software engineer.

"I’m happy with the result but I want to do better and chase my dreams.I want to become a software engineer and support my family. My mother has given up a lot for us and I want to pay her back," he concluded.

First Published: Jun 15, 2017 16:16 IST