Darbhanga (Bihar) [India], June 4 (ANI): Congress party General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi on Friday spoke over phone to Bihar's 'cycle girl' Jyoti Kumari and expressed condolences over the death of her father.
"Priyanka didi told me not to worry and that I will be able to continue my studies," Jyoti told ANI and said that the Congress leader had assured her that she will meet her educational and other expenses.
Narrating her conversation with Priyanka Gandhi, Jyoti said:"She asked how my father passed away and I told her that my father came here in this lockdown and died. She told me not to worry as she will bear my cost of education and other expenses. She assured me to ask for any help. I was worried as I have to brothers and a sister."
"I also told Didi that I want to meet her," Jyoti said.
In Darbhanga, local Congress leader Dr Mashkoor Ahmed Usmani presented to Jyoti the condolence letter sent by Priyanka Gandhi. He also gave sanitizers, masks and some medicines.
"Priyanka Gandhi herself spoke to Jyoti and we presented her condolences letter to Jyoti. Priyanka Gandhi assured her that she will bear the full expense of her education. Apart from this, whenever Jyoti needs any help, the whole party is ready to help her. As soon as the COVID period ends, Jyoti will be taken to Delhi to meet Priyanka Gandhi," Usmani told ANI.
Images of Jyoti Kumari, the teenager who had cycled, with her injured father riding pillion, for 1,200 kilometres from Gurugram to Bihar's Darbhanga during last year's national lockdown had captured the imagination of the country.
A year after that, Jyoti's father died of a cardiac arrest here.
The 14-year-old, now famed as Bihar's 'Cycle Girl' Jyoti Kumari was visiting her father Mohan Paswan who earned a living as an auto rickshaw driver in Gurgaon last year. After an accident in January 2020, Paswan had been forced to stay at home and Jyoti had arrived to help him when a national lockdown was announced and there was no public transport on the road.
With money running out as the lockdown was repeatedly extended, Jyoti noticing that her father was unable to pay the house rent and meet daily meal expenses, persuaded him to return home. They purchased a used bicycle and after convincing him to ride pillion, the girl embarked on the arduous cycled journey back to their village Sirhulli that falls under the Singhwara block of Darbhanga district.
News of Jyotyi's indomitable feat caught the attention of the Cycling Federation of India (CFI) and she was also was awarded the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar.
There was a stream of applause and appreciation for her from across the world, including from Ivanka Trump, former US President Donald Trump's daughter among other netizens. (ANI)