Tiya Singh, a 15-year-old from Delhi who appeared for her Class 10 CBSE exams this year, scored 92.4% when the results were declared on Monday. What makes us take note of Tiya’s marks amid the lakhs of other students took the exam is the circumstances under which she wrote her papers. When others were busy with last-minute preparations, Tiya was coping with the sudden and untimely death of her father and 11-year-old brother in a road accident only hours before her first paper.
Tiya, a student of Brightland School in Govindpuram, scored 99 in English, 95 in social studies, 90 in Hindi, 89 each in mathematics and science.
On the night of March 6, Tiya’s father and brother Garvit had gone to fetch dinner as Garvit stood second when his class 5 results came. They had gone on the motorcycle and were run over by a speeding truck near Shastri Nagar around 9.30pm. “She displayed an extraordinary strength in coping with her grief and maintaining her composure. She was crying the whole night and none of us had slept. She had gone to the hospital to see her critically wounded brother. She even consoled me time and again. When morning came, she got ready and went for her exams,” Reena Sagar, Tiya’s mother, said as quoted by Hindustan Times.
“After taking her exams, she returned to perform the last rites of her father and brother. I was overwhelmed by the way she dealt with her grief and trauma. Her father, before leaving the previous night, had told her that only two years of her school were left and she should secure good marks and go on to become a doctor,” Reena said.
Anil Sagar, Tiya’s uncle who stays in Delhi, said, “While they were returning, a speeding truck hit their bike. My brother died on the spot while my nephew died an hour later. Tiya saw both bodies but she somehow braved all odds. She took me along to the examination centre the next day and returned to perform the last rites. After that, she never looked back, she gave all her examinations one by one, despite the environment of grief at home.” “The errant truck driver is yet to be arrested,” he said.
Tiya, her parents, brother and her grandmother live in Avantika where her father had opened a crockery shop to earn a livelihood after facing financial difficulties.
Remembering all the happy times she shared with her brother and father, with a lump in her throat, Tiya said, “I still remember the small fights with my brother. But he loved me a lot. My father would have been the happiest person to see my results. I feel I could have done better had the accident not taken place. I devoted three to four hours to self-study and revised every topic after coming home from school. The accident took away everything I loved, but I have this challenge to prove myself to my father.”
Tiya’s school director Balvin Khandelwal is all praise for the child and even lent support to her family by offering a primary teacher’s job to Tiya’s mother.
“The girl is brilliant and has opted for physics, chemistry and biology in her class 11 as she is aiming to be a doctor, the way her father wanted her to be. From our end, we have waived all her school fee. I remember her first examination after the tragedy was mathematics— she showed phenomenal courage to appear for it,” Khandelwal said as quoted by the daily.