An ‘uncle’ from Mumbai helped an 11-year-old girl from Jamshedpur to pursue her dreams of buying a smartphone and pursuing online classes. Tulsi Kumari, who sells mangoes by the roadside, was left in shock when a certain Ameya Hete bought 12 mangoes from her worth Rs 1,20,000, paying Rs 10,000 for each mango. The money was transferred to her father Srimal Kumar’s account on Wednesday.
News18 Lokmat Digital had reported on Kumari’s struggles with poverty. After learning about her fight against all the odds, the Mumbai businessman named Ameya Hete bought one dozen mangoes from her for Rs 1.2 lakh to help her buy a smartphone and continue with online classes. He has given Kumari a mobile phone worth Rs 13,000 and Internet recharge throughout the year thus ensuring that there would be no interruption in the education of the girl child.
Reaching the little girl, in a small village in Jharkhand was not so easy. However, this was made possible by the initiative of the News18 network. Kumari is happy to have a mobile phone in her hand. She said that she would study hard now. Her parents also feel proud of her daughter.
Her father expressed his desire to raise the girl by teaching her a lot. Kumari’s mother did not like her selling mangoes. However, with the help, they hope that there would be no speed breakers in her education.
“Tulsi is a very smart and hardworking student. We are happy if she completes her education with the help we have given. We will continue to help her when she needs it,” said Ameya Hete.
The coronavirus lockdown has caused a paradigm shift in classes and schooling, and most operations have shifted online, deepening the digital divide in India. Last year, a domestic help’s son in Chennai was caught stealing a smartphone but later the police inspector gifted him one so that he can continue with his online classes.
The 13-year-old student from a corporation school was compelled to take the step following desperation of attending online classes. His parents reportedly couldn’t afford a smartphone as his father works at a biscuit shop and this pushed the school student to embark on theft.
According to the police, the boy came under the company of two boys from the same impoverished neighbourhood, The duo used the teenager as bait to steal a mobile phone. After seeing him loitering around during school hours, they decided to lure him with the idea of a smartphone so that he no more had to miss out on his online classes.
Three of them then managed to steal the mobile phone of a truck driver in Thiruvottiyur and eventually all three of them were caught. However, the story took a turn towards empathy after the police inspector S Bhuvaneshwari heard the boy’s need for a smartphone in order to continue with his education.