| Kartavya learners take part in Prakash 2013 at Indoor Stadium in Kala Bhavan, Dhanbad, on Sunday. Picture by Gautam Dey
Slum children proved themselves equal to competing with some of the most elite cradles of the coal town during Prakash 2013, the third annual function of Kartavya, ISM-Dhanbads students body.
Children of Mandal Basti, Koranda Basti, Lahbani Basti and Barmasia competed with top-notch cradles Delhi Public School, De Nobili School, Rajkamal Saraswati Vidya Mandir, DAV Public School Koylanagar and St Xaviers School at Kala Bhavan on Sunday.
Kartavya educates over 600 needy children across the district at their centres.
Students from slums, government and elite schools showcased models highlighting social and scientific issues ranging from womens security, dowry and alcoholism to green technologies and pollution at the exhibitions.
Aptly, Prakash 2013 began with Saraswati Vandana. Then, deputy commissioner (DC) Prashant Kumar, deputy development commissioner (DDC) Ratan Kumar Gupta and subdivisional officer (SDO) Lal Mohan Mahto lit the traditional lamp. Retired judge of Dhanbad consumer court L.K. Chaudhary was the special guest.
ISMs initiative to educate slum children presents a shining example to society. People have to be responsive to the needs of children hailing from underprivileged sections and see to it that benefits of government schemes reach them, DC Kumar added.
Echoing Kumar, DDC Gupta said he viewed the efforts of Kartavya in high esteem.
It was not tough to see why dignitaries were impressed.
Class IX Nidhi Kumari of Lahbani Basti enrolled at Kartavyas Centre I spoke about her dream to become a deputy commissioner.
Ninth grader Rajkumar, enrolled at Kartavya Centre II of Koranga Basti, said how his familys attitudes changed after he came under the ISM students outfit umbrella.
In exhibitions, too, slum children proved their mettle.
In the social exhibition section Mere Sapnon ka Bharat, slum children and public school students together presented 60 models. The tobacco addiction model presented by Kartavya Centre I students Deepak, Sonu and Monu of Class VI won the first prize.
DC Kumar also feted outstanding slum children for academic, behavioural and sporting achievements.