Nargis Naseem cracks exam despite riots, lockdown in Delhi

On her way to the examination centre she witnessed riots breaking out. She returned to watch her house burning down.

New Delhi: A Delhi riot victim overcame all odds and passed out with an outstanding percentage.

Nargis Naseem, a Class XII government school student from northeast Delhi, on her way to the physical education examination on February 24, she witnessed the riots breaking out near her home in Khajuri Khas. But, the ghastly scenes did not deter her zeal to appear for exam.

After the exam, she managed to safely return home accompanied by a relative. The very next day, she helplessly saw her house burn down. The fire engulfed her books too.

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Naseem’s family moved to a small rented room in the nearby Chandu Nagar, an area where many riot victims took shelter.

Nargis was shocked to study yet managed to get some books through donation. Nargis, the daughter of a labourer, appeared in just two subjects, political science and physical education, before the examinations were postponed in northeast Delhi due to the riots and COVID pandemic.

On Monday, the website of Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) declared her percentage and that was 62%. Jubiliant Nargis said she wasn’t sure about clearing the examinations, let alone scoring above 60%. Nargis said, she thought of getting just decent marks as she had done well in those two subjects, as reported by Times of India.

“It was on the day of my physical education examination that I witnessed the violence while going to the Gokulpuri government school. We could not get any transport while returning and spent hours walking through lanes before reaching home safely after 4pm,” Nargis recalled.

Salim, Naseem’s uncle who was instrumental in saving the family, said, “She has done well and we are all proud of her. Despite the odds, she has got over 60%. This is a lot for us as we were running for our lives a few months ago.”

Nargis expressed that in normal circumstances, she would have scored better. “An NGO gave me books and was helping me with studies.”

While CBSE has offered re-examination options for cancelled subjects later, Nargis said that she was not sure about exams being re-conducted. Nargis aspires to be a fashion designer.

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