Hyderabad: It is a touching tale of a 13-year-old girl from a rundown locality in the Old City, who has achieved national fame, but remains almost unknown in the neighbourhood. A strange irony because for a girl who remains another face in the madding crowd nearer home, she is on her way to a week’s study tour of Japan, a trip that has come her way, thanks to her brilliant writing abilities.
Like any girl of her age, Mahjabeen Unnisa is studying IX standard in Urdu medium at the equally inconspicuous Government Girls High School that is situated at Falaknuma. Her father, Mohammed Khadeer, makes ends meet as a plumber.However, being the studious kind with a flair for improving her command over language, Mahjabeen entered the national essay writing competition that is organised every year by Petroleum Conservation Research Association (PCRA).
The theme for this year was pretty emotional-Mera India Bachao. Competitions were held separately in 23 languages, including Hindi, Telugu, Urdu and English. The penmanship of Mahjabeen was of such lucid calibre that she brought instant fame to Telangana State. Her piece was declared the best in Urdu language from among contenders drawn from government and private educational institutions.
A moment of pride was when she received the award at a special function organised at the DRDO Bhavan in New Delhi in January.She received a citation acknowledging the performance, a laptop and a cash prize of Rs 30, 000. The bonus was an all-expenses paid study tour of Japan to all 23 national toppers.
As the students are currently burning midnight oil in preparation of their annual examinations, the tour will take-off in May. Not to miss out on the ‘historic once-in-a-lifetime moment’ Khadeer has just applied for her passport.The obscure dwellings, notwithstanding, the young and humble girl has firmed up her career choice.
‘I wish to become a doctor and serve people,’ is her avowed ambition. One hopes that the authorities and those keen on helping the economically-deprived will come forward to take ‘achievers’ like Mahjabeen Unnisa on board and support them so that they can realise their dreams and aspirations, in course of time.