Differently abled students make their mark at bike expo
LUDHIANA: Amid the hi-tech bikes and fitness equipment on display at the Bicycle Expo is a stall quite different from others. The stall has been selling napkins and tissues made by handicapped students of a school run by an NGO.
Under the guidance of its director Satwant Kaur, the students of Ek Jot Eklavya School are displaying their creations at the expo.
“Our students have been setting up their stalls at the expo for the past two years,” Satwant Kaur, director of Ek Jot Eklavya School, said. “This kind of activity encourages students and boosts their morale and confidence. The objective is to provide them employment opportunities.”
The school has about 40 physically and mentally challenged students. “We provide the students free education,” Kaur said. “Their welfare expenses are managed by donations.”
Ranjit, a visually challenged student, was managing the stall and attending to the visitors. “With the help of the NGO, students like me have become aware of the happenings and cultures in the world,” he said. “Telling visitors about our NGO makes me happy and I do not feel I am less able than others.”
Ranjit said he was earlier 40% blind, but with time his vision had deteriorated. Pointing to the napkins displayed in the stall, he said: “These napkins have been made by physically challenged children who are not able to do their daily chores. Everybody should appreciate their work.”
Harnoor, another student, said: “I was physically challenged from birth. Though my parents were not able to provide for my needs because of my handicap, the NGO has been helping me as well as others like me live healthy lives through donations made by social activists.”
“Setting up this stall has given us the opportunity to interact with people,” Chanti, a handicapped student, said. “It has given us confidence and courage.”