In the YK Jhuggi camp in east Delhi’s Yamuna Khadar, sheds are built at inefficient places, the drains are open, its a breeding place for mosquitoes, and the chaos is authentic and heart-wrenching. Home for slum dwellers, the camp shelters nearly 8,000 families. Between all the daunting stories, what catches ones eye is a flyover slab where 20-odd children are scribbling on their slates and reading out aloud.
These children are busy studying under a slab that was meant for the construction of a nearby flyover. Their teacher, Satyendra Pal (23), is a BSc student who also comes from the same camp. Since January 2016, Satyendra's class is open for all the slum children, and allows them to 'pay as they like' for the classes.
Though the nearest Municipal School is in Pocket V of Mayur Vihar Phase I, reaching there means crossing roads and a long walk for these kids, reports The Indian Express.
Most of the parents here are farmers and labourers, and no one has the time to drop and pick their children from school. I know the value of education, so I thought I can at least teach them the basics. The little money these villagers give helps me pay my college fee and support myself. I cannot ask my parents for that, says Satyendra.
Most of these slum dwellers hail from Badaun in Uttar Pradesh, according to a report by Zee News. Owing to no education support, most of these students drop out after ninth standard and this intrigued him. In the last few years, Satyendra has also received help from localities who have seen him taking classes and have offered donations in terms of table, chairs and boards.
Satyendra is also preparing for the UPSC exams, and is apprehensive about continuing the school, but he says he will serve the slum children till he can.