| Day out: Regent theatre in Patna, which invited students of Asha School for a screening of the movie on Wednesday. Picture by Deepak Kumar |
Prasoon Kumar (14), like any other boy of his age, was mesmerised by “Pi” Patel’s 227-day survival story in the Pacific Ocean with Richard Parker, the tiger, following a shipwreck.
The topping on the rare treat for the Class II student of Asha School was the wafer and popcorn offered to him as refreshment during the screening of Life of Pi at Regent theatre.
“We enjoyed a lot at the theatre. I had samosa, wafer, popcorn and soft drinks while watching the film. I had not heard the name of the movie before,” said Prasoon.
He was among the 75 people invited by Regent, which organised a free show of the movie for children with different abilities and their parents on the occasion of the theatre’s 85th year. The children, most of whom could neither speak nor hear, are students of Asha School run by the Indian Army. The institution is located near the Danapur cantonment.
“It was the most beautiful gift for my 14-year-old daughter. It’s not about watching a film. It’s more about visiting a theatre and having fun with her friends. She was very happy to eat the snacks with her friends,” said Sanjay Singh, whose daughter Simmi is also a student of the school.
This is not the first time that Regent has taken such an initiative. Three years ago, the theatre had screened Spiderman 3 for 1,000 orphans.
Expressing gratitude to theatre owner Suman Kumar Sinha for arranging such a show, Asha School, Danapur, principal Sangita Kumari Sinha said: “I was very happy when the theatre invited our children for the movie. Not only the children but their parents as well thoroughly enjoyed the film. They were found clapping many a time.”
She added: “It’s not a frequent affair that these children get to go out for such outings. Their days begin in the school and end there only. Today (Wednesday) was altogether a different day.”
Suman, the owner of Regent, said he had accepted the proposal of the event the moment Colonel Khalid Khan, posted in the headquarters of Jharkhand and Bihar sub-area, came up with the idea.
“These children rarely get such an opportunity. It’s most important to ensure that they are happy,” Colonel Khan said.
“Making money is not the motive of my life. The first priority is to be a good human being. I ask my children to be good human beings first. Just imagine how happy the students of Asha School are. I am very privileged to get an opportunity to serve them,” Suman said.