The Telegraph
Tuesday , March 4 , 2014
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Right to writer hands lifeline to injured

A Madhyamik student gravely injured her writing hand in an accident on Saturday but that didn’t get in the way of her taking the exam on Monday.

Puja Dolui, 16, got a writer to write for her. And she can thank chief minister Mamata Banerjee for that.

She was riding pillion on her father’s motorcycle on her way home from the exam centre on Saturday afternoon when a bus hit them from behind near the Behala tram depot. They were thrown off the two-wheeler and Puja, a student of Bidya Bharati school in Behala, fell on her right hand.

“My daughter’s right hand was badly bruised and swollen. She was in severe pain and could not even lift a pen, let alone write,” said Joydeb Dolui, who works for a public sector undertaking.

Puja’s mathematics examination was due on Monday.

Sources said Dolui called the headmistress and requested the school authorities to allow her a writer.

The desperate father went to the local councillor’s office on Sunday seeking help. He was then directed to chief minister Mamata Banerjee’s office in Kalighat.

Around 9.30pm, he reached Kalighat to plead his daughter’s case. An official assured him that Puja would be allowed to use a writer but he should visit the office again by 9.30am on Monday.

After a night of uncertainty, father and daughter arrived at Kalighat at 9.10am and a senior official heard their case 20 minutes later. The Doluis were racing against time. “I faxed a letter to board administrator Kalyanmoy Ganguly. A reply came within 10 minutes saying that my daughter will be allowed a writer.”

The examination began at 11.45am and she reached the venue, Behala Girls High School, in time for the test. By then, Dolui had arranged for a writer, a junior student of Bidya Bharati.

“A writer was allowed after chief minister Mamata Banerjee intervened,” said Atri Bhattacharya, principal secretary, information and cultural affairs.

Mamata had announced last Friday that Madhyamik students who met with an accident would be allowed to take the exam. “The board would arrange for a special exam,” she had said.

The announcement was made after 10 East Midnapore students were injured when their car hit a tree on the way to the Madhyamik centre. They were allowed a retest.

“The board allows a candidate a writer after he or she provides the documents certifying the medical condition from the superintendent of a government hospital,” said board administrator Ganguly.

The board allowed three other injured candidates to use writers on Monday — two in Murshidabad and one in Toofanganj, Cooch Behar.