Differently abled have a memorable day at mela

Visually challenged youth Gururaj, Nithyananda and Pradeep, who had topped the Mangalore University's BSW examinations, were felicitated during the 22nd 'Vishishtarigagi Vishishta Mela' organised at Canara High School Grounds (main) in Dongerkeri on Sunda

Three visually challenged youth, who topped Mangalore University’s Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) examinations, were felicitated during the 22nd ‘Vishishtarigagi Vishishta Mela’ organised at Canara High School grounds (Main) in Dongerkeri on Sunday.

After the felicitation, Nithyananda (awarded first rank, 88.02%), Gururaj (second rank, 87.94%) and Pradeep (third rank 86%) were seen visiting the stalls together. All three youth, alumni of city-based Roman and Catherine Lobo School for the Blind, said they had remained inseparable since their school-going days.

‘’We cannot forget Dr M Mohan Alva or BSW department in our life. He offered us free hostel and education,’’ recalled Pradeep with gratitude.

“There was no exemption and we even completed the field work,” Gururaj declared with pride. The three youth are now staying together in Bengaluru to realise their dreams of clearing Civil Service Examination (CSE) and becoming IAS officers.

Earlier, speakers like Corporation Bank Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) P V Bharathi and MESCOM Limited Managing Director Snehal R stressed on creating opportunities.

‘’As a society it is our duty to give them an opportunity,” Bharathi said.

Quoting mountain climber Arunima Sinha, Bharathi said, “The differently abled have proved they are second to none when their potential was identified at the right time.”

Snehal said, “If we have confidence in our children, they will become achievers.”

Seva Bharathi President Sumathi V Shenoy, Ashajyothi Honorary President Srinivas Rao, President Muralidhar Naik among others were present. With merry-go-round, inflatable slides and 24 stalls dishing out mouth-watering eatables, hundreds of children had a fun-filled day.

Magician Munnavar left the audience spellbound with his close-up magic tricks. Children squealed in delight when the silver coins held tightly in their fist disappeared only to reappear in a different place. Later, the children danced in gay to foot-tapping numbers.

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