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Visually-impaired Pune girl scores 91 per cent in HSC exams

Puranik, who always believes in breaking conventions, dreams of becoming a professor at Harvard University

pune Updated: Jun 13, 2018 15:43 IST
Ananya Barua
Ananya Barua
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune,visually-impaired,91 per cent
Saiee Puranik is a student of Fergusson College. (RAHUL RAUT/HT PHOTO )

Seventeen-year-old Saiee Puranik, a visually-impaired student of Fergusson Junior College, topped the differently-abled category with 91 per cent in Arts. Her physical limitations will not decide her future, she said.

“I want to explore the world, experience everything and nobody can tell me what I can or cannot do with my physical limitations,” said Puranik, who wishes to pursue bachelors in Sociology from St Xavier’s College, Mumbai.

An aspiring educationist, Puranik shared that her own education has suffered challenges due to the lack of facilities in the educational institutes.“In my condition, I do not have absolute blindness, but I require a digital magnifier to read. I never went to a special school, as my parents always insisted upon sending me to a regular school. So, during SSC exams, it was very difficult, because they would not allow a digital magnifier. It was literally my mother, who wrote letters to the board and convinced them to introduce and allow this, so that I could use this during Class 12 boards. Luckily, she was successful with the support from teachers from Fergusson College,” she said.

According to her, while FC is one of the few colleges with a robust support system, accessible facilities and technological assistance for the differently-abled, there is however, always more room for improvement.

“I want to study Sociology and later integrate it with psychology to understand the nuances of conventions, the attitude of people to accept and ignore despite difficulties. For instance, in education, the lack of inclusive atmosphere in the country, both infrastructurally and attitudinally, bother me and I want to change that by becoming a teacher who would try and reform the system,” she added.

Dreaming of becoming a professor at Harvard University, Puranik believes in breaking conventions and she did the same to prepare for her boards. “I studied to know and learn and not to memorise, and so I would restructure the entire book and personalise the text, in my words, to fit my understanding. This not only allowed me to sift through the jargon and get to the point, but also integrate my perspective into the same,” said Puranik.

First Published: Jun 13, 2018 15:43 IST