Girl travels 150 km, passes through dense forest to write SSLC exam
Athirappilly: Conquering the paths through the dense forest and covering 150 kilometres, Sreedevi arrived at the exam centre to write the SSLC examination on Tuesday. The girl who belongs to a tribal hamlet had an adventurous trip to reach the exam centre. She covered 7 kilometres of forest path by foot and travelled on bike and ambulance to cover 143 kilometres. She may be the only student who took such an effort to appear for the exam.
Sridevi was 30 minutes late to reach Nayaranagadi model residential school from her tribal hamlet. But the officials were waiting for her. The girl travelled to the school from her father’s residence at Kadambara tribal hamlet which is situated in the deep forest between Tamil Nadu-Valparai-Pollachi route. This place is 70 kilometres far from Malakkappara.
On Saturday, Chalakkudy Scheduled Tribe welfare officer and team visited tribal colonies at Malakkappara. They took students who are appearing for SSLC and Plus Two examinations on special vehicles to hostels. When the officials arrived here, Sridevi was at her mother Kanakamma’s house in Adichilthotty hamlet. Hence, the officials directed her relatives to inform her about the exam.
But, the tribal hamlet where Sridevi was residing has no power or range for mobile phone. Hence, the relatives were not able to inform her. Fortunately, a man in Malakkappara informed Thrissur social forestry assistant conservator PM Prabhu about Sridevi.
Following this, the official contacted Dhanushkodi, eco-tourism manager at Chinnar and sent a watcher to the tribal hamlet in search of Sridevi. On Sunday, the watcher arrived at the tribal hamlet and informed Sridevi about the exams.
When Sridevi got the message, accompanied by her brother, she rushed to a place for getting mobile phone signal after covering 4 kilometres. When she got signal for the mobile phone, she phoned her teacher and confirmed her exam centre. Later, she rushed to search for her father who headed to collect honey. She reached her father's house on Monday night.
She started her journey to the exam centre in the wee hours on Tuesday. After covering the forest path, she travelled to Malakkappara on a relative’s bike. Later, an ambulance of Vettilappara Primary Health Centre took her to the exam centre.
The tribal welfare department officer was informed about her trip to the exam centre. The official informed the matter to health officials and school authority. Health officials at Malakkapara check-post informed the matter to higher officials including DMO.
The ambulance took her to the exam centre as directed by the officials. She reached at the school around 2.30 pm. Amid the coronavirus outbreak, Sridevi appeared for the exam in an isolated classroom. After the exam, she has been quarantined in a single room.