As far as Ummul Kher is concerned, ‘where there is a will, there is a way’. The proverb has been proven true by this 28-year-old girl from the slums who, against all the odds stacked up against her, still managed to crack the UPSC exams and that too in her first attempt. As per a report by Hindustan Times, Ummul was born with a bone disorder and her family disowned her because she wanted to study beyond Class 8. Then she shifted to Delhi from her hometown in Marwar in Rajashthan where she used to live in a slum in Nizamuddin.
After coming to Delhi, she went ahead and took admission in Delhi University’s Gargi College and later entered Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) to pursue her master’s course – she was supported by a trust that funded all her education expenses. This week she cracked the civil services exam and got All India Rank 420. Ummul now aspires to get IAS stream under disability quota.
In her formative years, Ummul took admission in Pt Deendayal Upadhyaya Institute for The Physically Handicapped where she studied till Class 5. Later she went to Amar Jyoti Charitable Trust where she studied till Class 8. Speaking to Hindustan Times, Ummul said that her parents were against her studies and she was even abused. Her intentions were questioned as she wanted to study further, she said.
You might also want to see this:
Nevertheless, her days of struggle were still far from over. She met with an accident in 2012 that left her with as many as 16 fractures and bound to a wheelchair for around a year, requiring eight surgeries. But the brave girl was not deterred and cracked the Junior Research Fellowship for her Masters in International Studies in JNU. After this achievement, she was paid Rs 25,000 per month. Ummul also cleared the JRF-NET and started her M Phil from JNU. Currently she is pursuing her PhD there.
When asked about whether she will forgive her family for disowning her at such small age, Ummul said, “I don’t blame them. They were brought up in an environment that shaped their thinking. It is not their fault,” In the past two years, my relations with my family have improved. I will visit them soon, Hindustan Times quoted Ummul saying.