Under a Delhi Metro bridge, there lies a school for students from economically weak sections of society.
Can the lives of some children belonging to economically weak sections of society, be changed by the simple act of educating them, no matter what difficulties stand in the way? Well, two people in Delhi believed so, and that happens to be the genesis of a certain ‘school under a bridge’ near Yamuna Bank metro station, where students get free education.
Laxmi Chandra, a teacher, co-founded the school in 2011. There are around 300 students who regularly attend classes here. He says, “We run the school in two-time slots, the morning one being for boys and having around 120 students, and 180 girls in the evening slot.” Speaking of what inspired him to start the school, Chandra says, “I am from Bihar and I wasn’t so privileged to have a good education but somehow I managed to complete it. And when I came to Delhi, I started to teach these students because I understand their situation.” Laxmi co-founded the school with Rajesh Sharma and Shyam Mathur.
The school’s main aim is to change the lives of the people who can’t afford education and help them build a better future. The bridge not only acts as a roof over students but also provides plenty of space for all. The school has five blackboards painted on the wall and some stationary such as chalks and dusters, pens and pencils. The children sit on the carpet, which protects them from the rough ground. One can also witness art created by the children on the walls, which are beautifully painted and make the place more cheerful. Overall, this is a positive environment to learn and grow.
Laxmi says that there is no name of the school as such but the main focus should be what they are doing here. He adds, “People should treat everyone with full respect, irrespective of their financial status. My family was kicked out of the village, but somehow I managed to get some education and am living my life. I can actually see that India is changing really fast. And today I am here surrounded by these children dedicating my life to them, I teach them everything such as Science, Hindi, Sanskrit.” Other than Laxmi, there are seven other teachers who teach at this school. Chandra’s aim to educate children from low-income groups, is in hope that it will benefit the country and the literacy rate can finally go up.