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Neighbourhood School (2019).

Speech and hearing-impaired Soumya Ranjan Sahu has been a beneficiary of Swabhiman since 2016. Swabhiman supports him with books, learning material, hearing aid and dry ration in times of emergency. Meanwhile, he completed his standard 8th in VSS Nagar UGUP School with a good percentage. But another challenge was awaiting Soumya when he applied for 9th class admission at Govt. High School, VSS Nagar.

The Headmistress denied admission as Soumya had 100% speech and hearing impairment, and they did not have any provision for a child with 100% speech and hearing disability. This was a direct violation of RTE Act 2009 (amended in 2012) which gave rights to children to join a school of their choice in the neighbourhood. Soumya and his parents were heartbroken after hearing this decision. But this wasn’t the end of Soumya’s hope for a career.

His father, with the support of Swabhiman, wrote to all relevant authorities till the DEO Khurda (Sri Brundaban Satpathy) was coerced to give them an appointment and discuss the matter. Though initially DEO sided with the Headmistress but was finally forced to issue an order. It took several more visits, exchange of a couple of letters when finally, the school offered an olive branch and gave Soumya his rightful seat.

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