Delhi

Sushma Swaraj invites Pakistani girl struggling with school admission

Three days after The Hindu reported about >a young Pakistani refugee Madhu's struggle for education, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has invited the girl to her residence Saturday evening.

"Madhu - I have seen this story in the media. Pl see me at my residence tomorrow evening at 7pm," Ms Swaraj tweeted on Friday night.

Her followers on the site had tagged her to the news report asking her to help Madhu.

16-year-old Madhu had come to India with her mother, siblings, her uncle and cousins two years ago after they fled religious persecution in Pakistan's Punjab. Her father passed away long ago.

In a dire state to leave Pakistan, all her necessary documents like school leaving certificate, was left behind.

On September 7, The Hindu had reported how after struggling for months to get admission in Delhi government co-ed senior secondary school in Sanjay Colony, a place now home to her, she approached advocate and activist Ashok Agarwal, who then wrote to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal for intervention.

The school has refused to enroll her in Class IX as she does not have the necessary documents required to complete the formalities. Madhu says it’s impossible for her to arrange for those papers. “All I want is to study. I enjoy studying,” she says as she prepares to meet minister this evening.

After Ms Swaraj invited Madhu, Mr. Agarawal tweeted, “thanks sushmaji for taking up the cause of Madhu. Consider her case for admission in KV (Kendriya Vidyalaya).”

She was studying in Class X in Pakistan at the time they decided to move to India. Her life as a student in Pakistan was no normal affair. “In school, she felt unsafe and humiliated. Being a Hindu, she was not allowed to use glass to drink water and would rather use her hands for the purpose. Her teachers maintained distance from her,” said her uncle Jevar who used to run a brick kiln in Pakistan.

“When we went to the government school in Bhatti mines, they told us she was ‘overage’. Then they asked for a transfer certificate, but we had left the same in Pakistan. The school then asked for her Aadhaar card. When we got that made, they asked for some other documents as she is still a Pakistani refugee,” says Jevar.

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Printable version | Apr 19, 2021 11:20:47 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/Sushma-Swaraj-invites-Pakistani-girl-struggling-with-school-admission/article14639979.ece

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