Karnataka: Vegetable Vendor's 22-Year-Old Daughter Tops Aero-Science Exam
K Sivan, the Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has been a strong influence and inspiration in shaping her decision to opt for aeronautical engineering.
Winning wasn't everything but the only thing for a vegetable vendor's daughter who surmounted all odds to secure the highest marks in the Aeronautical Engineering course of the Vishvesvaraiah Technological University (VTU).
With 9.7 percentile, 22-year-old, R Lalitha, is the first graduate in her family which has sold vegetables for generations at the Nehru Market in Hiriyur town near Chitradurga, Karnataka.
On Saturday, when she will walk up the stage on the VTU campus to receive the gold medal from the vice-chancellor for her outstanding performance, it will be a moment of immense pride for her parents Rajendra K and Chitra R.
K Sivan, the Chairman of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has been a strong influence and inspiration in shaping her decision to opt for aeronautical engineering. Lalitha doesn't want to go abroad for work. She wishes to stay back and serve the country as a space scientist with the Indian Institute of Science (IISc) or ISRO.
Lalitha, a student of Yelahanka's East-West College of Engineering, Department of Aeronautical Engineering had cleared the college entrance test and the department semesters for three years with the first rank. Due to this feat, she was given a free hostel facility.
"For livelihood purposes, we have been selling vegetables from the past 40 years. We did not have an opportunity to get educated. Because of the poverty that we faced during our time, we could only manage to study till class one. We had decided that our children should not face the same phase, and should rather get a quality education. Now our daughter has fulfilled our dreams and we are proud of her. Our efforts have paid off," Rajendra said.
Lalitha has two sisters, R Bhuvana and R Tulasi, who are pursuing fashion designing and civil engineering respectively.
"My parents are my backbone. Only because of their constant support, I could achieve such a milestone. I'm very happy for what I have achieved. This is a small gift to my parents," said an overjoyed Lalitha.
A former Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) spokesperson for Karnataka, Ravi Krishna Reddy, took to social media to acknowledge and share Lalitha's success story.