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Updated: February 1, 2010 18:46 IST

Dancing away to glory

Santosh Patnaik
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Y. Pushpalata giving a Kuchipudi performance. Photo: K.R. Deepak
THE HINDU Y. Pushpalata giving a Kuchipudi performance. Photo: K.R. Deepak

Despite the bout of polio she suffered when she was a toddler affecting one of her legs, she is able to mesmerise everyone with her dance skills.

Y. Pushpalata, 8, daughter of daily wage labourer Appa Rao and his wife Adilakshmi, has learnt Kuchipudi and won laurels by giving 10 performances at various platforms by sheer hard work.

“My disability should not be a handicap for my dream to become a famed dancer,” says Pushpalata, who is studying Class II at Sunflower Special School, Madhurawada. Apart from special children, the school admits others from poverty-stricken families to provide free education and hostel facilities.

Oozing confidence, she is thankful to her dance teacher Akella Bharati who runs Bharatiya Kalasala and school founder M. Nagaraju Kumari for whatever she is today.

Her dance at the annual conference of Rotary International on Sunday floored all, motivating host Rotary Club Port city president R.C. Rai to announce a financial aid of Rs.5,000. Later, the Rotarians lined up to give their bit of contribution so as to enable the child prodigy to become richer by nearly Rs.1 lakh.

“She is not only a bright student but also has the temperament and the will power to become an acclaimed dancer,” declares Nagaraju Kumari. She spotted her standing on one leg for a long time listening to a melodious song in the school compound one day. Later, she started learning Kuchipudi from Bharati, a disciple of Vempati Chinna Satyam.

Pushpalata’s parents are proud of her success. “We don’t have enough resources to fund her studies and cherish her interest to become a dancer but we are obliged to all those who are helping her to realise her dream,” says her mother.

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