Union External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj Monday thanked Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia on Twitter for helping a girl, who came to India from Pakistan in 2014, get admission to a government school. Swaraj, who also posted Sisodia’s letter to the Delhi Department directing it to take necessary steps to help the 16-year-old, tweeted, “Thank you @msisodia ji for this kind gesture.”
Following a letter written to him by Madhu, who came from Sukkur in Pakistan’s Sindh, Sisodia had on Monday asked the Education Department to help her get admission to a government school. Madhu, who moved to India with her parents and five siblings, lives in Bhatti Mines area. She wrote a letter to Sisodia saying she had moved to Delhi from Pakistan two years ago with her family owing to “adverse conditions” in the country.
She said she had no documents like birth certificate or a school-leaving certificate and was finding it difficult to secure admission in a government school. Madhu said she had studied till class IX in Pakistan and wanted to pursue further education. The only document she had was her passport, which had her date of birth. After receiving her letter, Sisodia wrote to the education secretary stating that the government should “go the extra mile”. “To accommodate the request of Ms Madhu, a migrant girl from Pakistan, the government can consider relaxing rules and regulations if they come in the way of her joining our school,” Sisodia wrote to the education secretary.
Madhu said that before Sisodia’s intervention, she was denied admission to the school at least 12 times. During the last two years, she said she had taken private tuition in English and Hindi to overcome the language problem. “My command over English and Hindi was not good but I made an effort to learn so I would be ready when the school took me in,” she said.
Madhu’s 28-year-old brother, Lakhmir, said that the first time he and his sister went to the government school, the principal asked her to bring an affidavit from the court. “After that, she was asked to bring an Aadhaar card as identity proof. Then she was asked to show her Visa, but it was submitted with the authorities. Meanwhile, she had to quit tuitions as that was costing us money,” he said.