"I have lived here (the public toilet quarters) for about 12 years. My father earned about Rs 6000-7000 which supported our home. The conditions were bad, but I never gave up on playing."
Some stories of struggle leave you inspired, some awestruck and some, completely dumb-founded! The journey of Juhi Jha, from Indore, Madhya Pradesh falls into the last category.
If you have ever been to a public toilet, you’ll know how terrible most of them smell. You step inside, hold your breath to avoid the stench, finish your business and flee the premises as fast as you can.
Now, how do you think living right next to such conditions would be?
Juhi can tell you her first-hand experience.
Juhi’s father, Subodh Kumar Jha, was a former worker at a public toilet in Indore. With an income of Rs 7000, the family of five had to live in the quarters allotted to him.
This room was placed in the public toilet building, and that’s where Juhi spent 12 years of her life.
In Class 4, Juhi joined the Happy Wanderers group and started training as a Kho-Kho player. Although the financial condition of her family was tight, she continued with her passion as well as her studies.
Speaking to Dainik Jagran, the 20-year-old said, “I have lived here (the public toilet quarters) for about 12 years. My father earned about Rs 6000-7000 which supported our home. The conditions were bad, but I never gave up on playing. Three years ago, he lost the job and with it, the house too.”
Even then she continued playing and soon, excelled in the sport. Today, Juhi’s hard work and persistence has paid off, and how.
This year, the Madhya Pradesh Department of sports and youth welfare will award the Vikram Award to 10 players and Juhi is one of them. The awards will be presented tomorrow, 4th October 2018.
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Conditions for the Jha family have improved in the last few years. They have shifted to a rented house in Madhya Pradesh. “My mother, Rani has taken up work as a tailor, and since I’ve got a job in a school, it adds to our family income. I am happy that my government job will help my family further. I am currently in the final year of BCom and wish to study ahead further,” she said.
We do not doubt that this determined young woman will achieve whatever she sets her mind to, and wish her all the very best in her endeavours!
(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)