Sunday, 5 December, 2021

Panna’s dream captures the imagination of Chandpur

Meritorious student Panna Akter of Raicho village in Hajiganj upazila will get the chance to chase her dream of becoming a doctor after all, thanks to the initiative and generosity of her local MP and other affluent personalities of the district.

On Friday last, UNB reported how Panna, a student of Hajiganj Degree College and the daughter of a humble rickshaw puller, gained admission into the MBBS course of Mymensingh Medical College obtaining 672nd position in the admission process, but her family lacked the financial ability to send her away to the college.

After the story gained traction on social media, there was an immediate response from a number of quarters, including parliamentarian Major (retd) Rafiqul Islam Bir Uttam, who pledged to bear all her expenses.

Following the huge outpouring of support, Hajiganj Degree College teachers Bilkis Begum and Belal Hossain of the management and mathematics departments respectively, the kindly married couple who supported Panna through phases of her education, accompanied her to MMC on Monday to complete the process of her enrolment - her classes start on January 10.

Panna obtained GPA-5 both in SSC and HSC exams, according to her principal at Hajiganj Degree College Masud Ahmed and Vice-Principal Anwar Ullah.

Parents of the girl sought financial assistance on humanitarian grounds for their daughter to help her pursue her dream of becoming a doctor through a post on Facebook. It drew the attention of local journalists, who got the story out through various outlets in the past few days.

Her teachers also spoke about her talent while seeking financial support for her medical studies.

On Saturday, parliamentarian Rafiqul Islam assured her mother over the phone that he personally would cover the educational and “all other expenses” during her studies at the MMC.

Talking to UNB on Monday, the Member of Parliament for Chandpur-5 (Hajiganj/Shahrasti) confirmed that he had indeed pledged his support to the girl’s parents, and there was no question of going back on his word.

“I’ve already been in touch with the MMC authorities regarding her attending the institution. [I’ve told them] that everything relating to her education will be borne by me as well as any other expenses she may require,” the three-time MP said.

Indeed, now there is almost a scramble by different individuals to cover some of the costs Panna will incur while away at college. Chandpur Deputy Commissioner Md Majedur Rahman Khan, following the MP’s intervention, had to settle for the admission fee for her to start classes at the MMC.

Meanwhile, Alamgir Hossain, officer-in-charge of Hajiganj Police Station, and some other local influential people are trying to find some costs that they may also bear.

Earlier in her studies, Hajiganj Degree College authorities bore all her necessary expenses, including books. Besides, Belal Hossain and Bilkis Begum, on whom Panna relies for guidance, bore the expenses for her coaching in different subjects.