This 28-Year-Old Who Sells Flowers On Mumbai Streets Takes A Flight To US – Read Her Journey


A 28-year-old women from Mumbai, who used to accompany her father in selling flower garlands on the streets of the city, has managed to get admission to the University of California for PhD.

Sarita Mali is currently doing her PhD in Hindi Literature at Indian Language Centre at JNU. She has taken degrees of MA and Mphil from JNU and in July, she will submit her PhD.

While talking to reporters, she said: “I feel there are ups and downs in everyone’s life. Everyone has his/her stories and sufferings. This is decided in which society one is born and what life you get. Unfortunately, or fortunately in some sense, I was born in a society where problems were the most essential part of my life.”

Talking about the turning point of her life, Mali said, “JNU is the turning point of my life. Getting admitted to JNU in MA is the turning point of my life. Had I not got admission here, I don’t know where I would’ve been. A university like JNU gives abundant hope to people coming from the society where I belong to.”

In 2010, one of her cousins mentioned to her about JNU and many things were unknown to her. In 2010, the internet was not an era and she even didn’t have a Smartphone till graduation. So suddenly they said, ‘whosoever goes to JNU becomes something’. That particular line got stuck somewhere in her mind. She used to chant that daily like a mantra. She started her preparation for JNU in her BA first year. Back then, the exams for JNU used to be subjective and in 2014, she got selected for the last seat of OBC in JNU for her master’s, she said.

Mali also mentioned that she learnt a lot from her day-to-day struggles.

“Sometimes it feels unbelievable that I am living in some dreams, but I feel there are more responsibilities for me now. When I turn back to look at that society from where I have come, that journey I can’t believe it. If JNU would’ve not been here, I would not have done what I am doing right now. Trust was made after coming to JNU that we can achieve many things,” she said.

She has also appealed to the government to make more such public-funded universities so that more students from their society can come and study, she said.

Sarita Mali is one of the youngest scholars at JNU. 

During festivals, she used to sell flowers with her father, especially at big festivals like Ganesh Chaturthi, Diwali, and Dussehra. She has done this work with her father during school time. Otherwise, whenever she used to go on vacations from JNU, she used to make flower garlands. For the past two years, as the pandemic hit, her father’s work halted. Before that, they all used to do this work. So, this was her society where on one side, there were struggles and on the other side, there was hope. There were problems and there was a passion to do hard work as well. The same passion and support of her family have brought her here, Mali shared.

Sarita Mali has 6 members in her family including her mother, father, elder sister and two younger brothers. The sole bread earner is her father. Due to lockdown, her father went to his hometown in Badlapur in Jaunpur.

Source link