While perfectly healthy high scorers in the SSC exams are being celebrated for their feat, there is a whole tribe of those who have aced the exams despite debilitating illnesses. One such is 16-year-old Sagar Parmar who gave his exams with a tumour in his brain. He would head for Tata Memorial Hospital (TMC) for his radiation session after his papers every single day. He studied for six hours after that and brought home an impressive 78.68 per cent.
Sagar was first diagnosed with bone cancer in 2012, but beat that. In 2014, however, the cancer returned, but he was cured. However, in 2016, the cancer returned as a tumour in the brain.
"After my paper, I used to go to Tata's for radation for my tumor. It helped control the intense pain. After my cancer relapsed three times, I went into depression, but my parents, doctors and counsellor helped me get my spirits up and sit for the exams. More than myself, I am happy for my parents that I have been able to score a distinction (78.60 per cent)," Parmar said.
After his exams at a Dombivli centre, Sagar would reach Tata's for radiation around 3 pm, following which he would get back home after 7 pm. He studied for five hours everyday between 7pm and mid-night. "Students worry only about the paper, but I also had to worry about my health. I didn't want it to affect my concentration. It is painful but I am not giving up hope. I want get an MBA or become a CA," he said.
The social worker and counsellor of the hospital, Sahara Mallika Amita Bhatia, said, "The morale of such children falls drastically after they are diagnosed with cancer but they have the ability to achieve their potential with the support of their families and friends."
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