Fifteen years old Anmol Beri has butterflies fluttering in her belly thinking about her big day Friday. All of two feet, eight inches, the Class 11 student can hardly walk, but on Thursday she will step into the big shoes of Ferozepur Deputy Commissioner for an entire day. Anmol suffers from locomotor disability and dwarfism — conditions for which she has undergone four surgeries, including three at AIIMS in Delhi.
Impressed by her during a de-addiction seminar at her school — RSD Raj Rattan — a month back, DC Chander Gaind invited her to live the experience in his office.
“My official vehicle will go to pick her from her house Friday. She will be given a guard of honour, a red carpet welcome and later she will sit in my chair, observe the office functioning,” said the DC, adding,”She was sitting in front row during my lecture…I interacted with her. Her presence of mind impressed me and when I asked her what she wanted to become, her prompt reply was — IAS officer. She wants to work as DC, so I decided to invite her to my office for a day so that she can live that experience for a day.”
Anmol, who has taken up humanities in Class 11, says that she is determined to pursue a career in civil services. Her school principal, Parveen Aul, said: “She was a topper from Class 1- 8 and in Class 9, she scored over 95 per cent marks. In Class 10, she scored 85.6 per cent marks. She is outstanding. We have high hopes from her.”
The 15-year-old has come so far despite a string of difficulties and challenges posed by her disability that she has to overcome on a daily basis.
Speaking about her condition, her father Amit Beri said,”She had this deformity at birth. We got four surgeries done. First was a missing heel surgery in Amritsar when she was twenty days old. The other three surgeries were done at AIIMS, Delhi. But her condition will not hold her back. She will live her dreams.”
Her mother, Chanchal Beri, added: “People often make fun of her height when we go out for a holiday. The school, however, is very supportive. People start looking at her as if she is a thing to be gawked at. We are now strong enough to deal with all these things….”
About her daily challenges, the mother added: “She can take only small steps to walk. She used a wheelchair earlier, but now she prefers to be independent. At times we hold her in our lap or a wheelchair is used in emergencies.”
As for Anmol, the only thing on her mind is Friday’s visit to the DC office. “I will do whatever DC sir tells me. It will be a great experience for me,” says the Class 11 student, who also dabbles in content writing and graphic design.