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Special touch for ties
- School of Hope rakhis sparkle with crystals from Mumbai

Tiny and colourful crystal flowers and sequins from Mumbai are giving special rakhis a brand-new look this year.

Thirty students of School of Hope in Northern Town, Jamshedpur, are designing threads of love to be as eye-catching as possible.

“Students are engaged in the project for a fortnight now. July 31 is their deadline to complete making 6,000 rakhis. They work from 9am to 11am everyday,” said Rama Roy, a teacher who is assisting the group of special students in which 12-year-old Shubham Chourasia (12) is the only one below 18 years.

“Shubham is a very smart boy and has a keen interest in this project. So, we included him in the group. He smears glue on the threads,” smiled principal Shyamala Raju.

The special rakhis have already found many takers with over 2,500 pieces sold, the principal added.

“The colourful crystal flowers and beads procured from Mumbai are making rakhis really festive. Other items like thread, needle, glue, small cards and plastic covers have been procured locally. But the crystals are creating a buzz,” she said.

“JH Tarapore School has ordered 1,200 rakhis while Rajendra Vidyalaya is buying 500 pieces. Carmel Junior College, Loyola School and Baug-e-Jamshed have placed orders for 200 each. It looks like the stock will be exhausted before the festival, which falls on August 10,” the principal added.

“The crystal flowers and beads give rakhis a different look. We had made 20 different varieties of which our principal approved only four,” said teacher N. Jyoti Acharya.

All these four variants are priced at Rs 10 each.

Apart from bulk orders, the special children will also sell these rakhis from a stall at Tata Main Hospital.

“Two students on rotation basis will sell the rakhis. They will go alone from the school to TMH. This way they will improve their communication skills,” said Raju.

Nurul Hassan (24), who is the eldest member of the group and has been entrusted with the job of punching small cards that are used for placing rakhis, said he was enjoying his stint.

“I am enjoying the work. I also help other students,” said the Kadma resident.

Youngest team member Shubham, half the age of Nurul, echoed him. He said he was keen to make rakhis and felt proud to be a part of the group. “I like the work. I am happy,” said the Sonari boy.