Sonu Rani Das, the lone graduate from the Harijan community here, wanted to be a teacher to establish her own language, but could not yet materialise the dream.
Sonu was eager to work for the people of her underprivileged community who are deprived of the light of education. However, the dream could not come true.Locals said the talented woman had to limit her activities only by resorting to private tuition. But with this, the future of the Harijan community remained in darkness.
The first graduate of Tanbazar sweeper colony, Sonu Rani Das, despite thousands of impediments of her underprivileged community, bypassing various obstacles, entered university completing studies in school and college. Apart from studies, she also worked with different NGOs.
As a representative of the Harijan community, she represented Bangladesh at home and abroad. At first, she participated in the Global Exchange Programme in Scotland. Sonu stayed there for three months under the Bangladesh-Scotland cultural exchange programme.
Later, she went to Geneva to attend the human rights conference. There, she highlighted the Dalit women’s position in the political arena in a seven-minute speech which was acclaimed by all.
Afterwards, her success stories came up in various mass media. She became well-known as an ideal woman which encouraged the Harijan community.
After a report on her was published in a vernacular daily, she became a talk of the country. Later on, all the popular media outlets published articles highlighting her success stories. Besides, international media BBC also broadcast a report on her.However, she did not leave her dream to become a language teacher. With the objective to fulfill this dream, she sat for primary teacher recruitment test in which 1,773,917 candidates took part. But her name did not come up in the list of the 55,295 successful candidates. As a result, her dream to become teacher was shattered.
“At present, I’m completely unemployed. Many talk about many things. But what is the result after doing so many things? What benefit have I had after studying by working hard? What will I do by letting my children study?” Sonu Rani told UNB.
“I don’t even feel to suggest anyone of the slum about education of their children. Once the people who used to cite me as an example to become encouraged now suggest their children to remain aloof from getting education citing me. I just listen to them bowing my head,” she pointed out.
“It would be frustrating for me if I couldn’t become a teacher, but more frustrating would be about the future of my community. This community will have no future in the more than a decade,” she said.
Members of this community will lag behind as they did in the past, she lamented.