The story was edited by Prof. P Ramesh Kumar

It is often heard, “Where there is a will there’s a way”, but it is mostly only heard and not seen in action. Chandini Maurya, a Class 6 student of Dhoom Manikpur Village Primary and Upper-Primary school, is a topper of the school, but she is no ordinary topper.

Chandini suffers from Hemiparesis, a disorder that leads to muscle weakness or partial paralysis on one side of the body that can affect the arms, legs and facial muscles.

Chandini is a specially-abled child but her teachers say that she is a good listener, a dedicated student who is trying to help herself with the studies. Chandini was enrolled in the school under the Beti Bachao Beti Padhao scheme.

She was in the same school from Class 1 but dropped out after completing Class 3. She had enrolled again in Class 4 under the Beti Bachao Beti Padhao scheme.

Her class teacher, Manjari Dwivedi, said that she is the brightest student of the class and is the first in her class to submit her homework.

“I have taught her for six months now and I am amazed at her grasping power. She mostly gives the right answers and writes them down if she can’t speak. Her friends help her a lot on her way to full recovery.”

Chandini’s friends carry her bag from home to school and back.

Chandini’s bestie, Anjali Kumari, 14, told of the time when Chandini couldn’t even speak or walk properly.

“I used to go to her home to carry her bag early morning. I was later joined by two other girls who used to carry her to school. We also used to help her with the homework. We are always delighted to see her cheerful,” said Anjali Kumari.

Today, Chandini is trying to walk independently. She plays Carrom and chess with her friends.

She loves to watch cartoons but only after completing her homework and exercises.

Her father, Shamsher Maurya, works in a nearby warehouse and loves his daughters. Her mother, Samju Devi, also started working recently.

Chandini dreams of becoming a doctor one day and plans to join the country’s big hospitals and treat the needy.

“Just like my younger sister, Anjali, I want to also become a doctor, my sister has bagged a scholarship, and I am working towards it. I wanted to join this school because it was friendly and the teachers helped me. I play Carrom and chess with my friends,” said Chandini.

Chandini’s younger sister, Anjali Maurya, was the brightest student of Dhoom Manikpur School until she bagged a scholarship from National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) and got a fully funded admission in DAV School nearby.

Anjali takes care of Chandini till their parents return from work. Anjali also cooks food for Chandini and helps her change clothes.

Aparna Gupta, School’s Outreach Officer and Community planner said that confidence building goes a long way in landing pupils at the school.

“The community awareness sessions help us build confidence in the community and on that basis the parents send their children to our school. One such student is Chandini.”


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