Saturday, October 22, 2011

Uttam Teron

Seven years before the Right to Education Bill was introduced in Parliament, Uttam Teron, a young man from Pamohi, 20 km from Guwahati, dreamt of 100 per cent literacy for the children of his village. Education was the lowest priority in this Karbi-dominated hamlet and most children, especially girls, helped their parents in the fields. This changed when Teron began the Parijat Academy in 2003 with four students. Today, the school, with a small hostel, provides free education to 502 students of which 256 are girls. "Teron has shown how the efforts of an individual can inspire a big movement," says Shantikam Hazarika, Director, Assam Institute of Management.

The Journey: Born to a train driver father and a homemaker mother who never went to school, Teron invested the Rs. 800 he had earned as a private tutor in constructing a room with a tin roof and bamboo walls. It became his school.

The Mission: Plans to build a hostel which can accommodate 100 students, a full-fledged computer centre, a health clinic, a day-care centre for handicapped children and a weaving centre for girls.

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