Yesterday, 16-year-old Monika More embraced life afresh. After losing both her arms under a local train at Ghatkopar station on January 11, the Kurla teen faced her first day at junior college following the accident.
Monika offers prayers before heading to college. Pics/Sayyed Sameer Abedi
Dressed in brand new clothes, Monika made her way to T D Mehta Junior College, Ghatkopar, a perfect picture of determination. She was going to college two days after she got home from a six-month stay at KEM Hospital, during which time she had been promoted to Std XII.
Her parents, who say they won’t let her anywhere near a train, drop her to Ghatkorpar’s TD Mehta Junior College in an auto; they say they intend to do this every day
The Mores swear they won’t let her travel by train anytime soon. “We don’t mind spending extra on autos every day to drop and pick her up from college, but we won’t let her travel by train again,” said Kavita, Monika’s mother. At college, an emotionally excited bevy of friends and teachers greeted her with warm hugs and laughter moist with tears.
At college, an overwhelmed Monika is greeted by tear-stained hugs from her friends and teachers, who make her cut a ‘welcome back’ cake
As hundreds of classmates cheered her, Monika couldn’t hold back her own tears. She was showered with gifts, flowers and pecks, as a cake awaited her in the classroom. “I had been receiving calls from my friends and professors, who were looking forward to seeing me in college. I was in hospital for so long I had forgotten what student life feels like,” said Monika.
A helpful college management and her generous classmates have collected funds for her so she can finish her studies; her teachers will give her notes to help her make up for lost timeBack at home, a slightly tired
Harshawardhini Pota, one of Monika’s teachers, said, “The students have worked hard to raise funds for Monika. Her class itself raised over Rs 2.5 lakh.” The college management, too, is ensuring nothing hinders her studies and HSC examinations this academic year.
Monika says her first aim is to master the use of her prosthetic arms. “I feel bad when my mother has to help me wear clothes and shoes. I want to be independent,” the gritty teen says
“We have formed support groups where students will help her with studies. Remedial classes will be held for her,” said Principal Leena Raje. Her fees has also been waived, and the management has raised funds for her. “The money has already been transferred to a fixed deposit in her name. She’ll have no problem completing her education,” said Meena Khetani, the college trustee.