Determination and perseverance can overcome the most difficult obstacle or disability. This was best testified by the success of 17-year-old Malavika Somayaji, who though suffering from Down's syndrome, passed the second year pre-university examination with 47 per cent marks.
Malavika is the youngest daughter of M.S.N. Somayaji and Premalatha Somayaji. She studied from first standard to SSLC at the Basel Mission High School in Parkala. She passed SSLC with 57 per cent marks. Then, she joined Sneha Tutorial to do the PU course in the arts stream.
Writer Vaidehi, who is Malavika's maternal aunt, said all the credit for Malavika's success should go to her mother Ms. Premalatha Somayaji. “She (Ms. Premalatha) paid all her attention on Malavika. Malavika too cooperated with her mother. My sister taught her by repeating the lessons, by telling stories and giving examples. The bond between Malavika and her mother is truly unique. She used to study till midnight,” she said.
The encouraging atmosphere at the Basel Mission High School also helped a lot. Ms. Vaidehi said that the headmaster of the school encouraged and inspired Malavika. “Such children should be sent to normal schools than special schools. Malavika was also helped by her teachers at the Sneha Tutorials”, she said.
Her parents are now thinking of seeking admission for a vocational course or doing a B.A. degree. Asked whether she would study further, Malavika said: “I am interested in computers and would like to pursue it”.
Professor of Paediatrics at Kasturba Medical College, Nalini Bhaskaranand, who treated Malavika, said that the entire credit of Malavika's success should go to Ms. Premalatha Somayaji.
Malavika Somayaji fought Down's syndrome to pass PU examination