At a time when religious intolerance is on a rise in the country, a young girl from Karnataka shows us how we should not think of religion as a barrier. Fathimath Rahila, a student of Sarvodaya High School in Puttur, has topped an exam in Ramayana.
Around 39 students participated in the exam conducted by the Bharat Sanskriti Prathisthan in November, 2015. Fathimath emerged victorious by scoring 93% in the exam.
She developed an interest in Hindu literature in class 9.
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“I prepared from the beginning of the academic year with my uncle’s help. I want to appear for the Mahabharata exam too,” she told Times of India.
Her father Ibrahim, who works in a factory, told Coastal Digest, “She is well-versed with the Holy Quran. I’m proud of my daughter. Children should learn the essence of all religions.”
According to reports, students from Class 8 and 9 are allowed to take the exam. However, those answering the Class 10 board exams are not encouraged to attempt it.
Fathimath will study during her summer vacation for the Mahabharata exam.
Shivarama H.D., the Principal of her school, said the students appear for exams after self-study and none of them are forced to take it. He also mentioned that the exam is more about literature and doesn’t have a religious context to it.
Maryam Siddiqui, a Muslim girl, had won first prize in an inter-school Bhagavad Gita competition last year.