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Year’s grace gift for student
Court orders school, Council to allow ailing girl to sit for HS 2003

Justice A.K. Mitra of Calcutta High Court on Thursday directed the headmaster of Boral Girls’ High School to take all necessary steps to ensure that Promita Kundu fills up her application form for Higher Secondary (HS) 2003. The judge also directed the headmaster to send the form to the West Bengal Council for Higher Secondary Education “within seven days”.

The Council has also been directed to allow the student to sit for her HS examination as a regular candidate of Boral Girls’ High School. Promita’s lawyer Supradip Roy conveyed the order of the court to the school authorities, as well as to the Council office, on Thursday.

Metro had reported on January 4 (Testing times for ailing student) how Promita was being denied permission to sit for HS 2003 as a regular candidate. She had earlier cleared the selection test and been issued the admit card for HS 2002, but could not sit for the examinations after being told by city specialists that she was suffering from cancer.

At the Christian Medical College and Hospital, in Vellore, where Promita was taken, doctors set aside the earlier diagnosis and concluded that an “abdominal malfunction” was what she was suffering from. “She should be all right after surgery and post-operative medication,” they told the relieved family of the girl.

After the surgery in April last year, she went through an extensive treatment procedure.

After a few months of rest, Promita was back at her books, preparing for HS 2003. She even returned to Boral High School, a government-aided institution in Garia, where teachers were happy to welcome her back.

But her dream to appear for the finals appeared to crumble after the HS Council announced that Promita would have to clear the selection tests again.

“But I cleared the exams in 2002 and my results are there for everyone to see. Why should I lose another year now'” pleaded Promita.

With the HS Council refusing to yield, Promita’s father, Pradip Kundu, filed a case before Calcutta High Court, alleging that the Council was not allowing her to sit for this year’s HS examination as a regular candidate, even though she had cleared the qualifiers in 2002.

The Kundus further alleged that the school authorities had initially assured Promita that she would be allowed to appear for HS 2003, without having to clear the selection tests again.

But when it was time to fill up the application form, the Council refused Promita permission, leaving her with the prospect of having to drop another year.

Thursday’s developments in the high court have given Promita the hope to pursue higher studies without yet another setback.

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