Asma Shaikh, a 17-year-old Mumbai street dweller, used to dream of a home.
The dream came true when she and her family moved into a one-bedroom flat on Mohammed Ali Road for the next three years.
Shaikh dedicatedly spent her time with her books. She had been studying on the footpath near Azad Maidan and braved odds to join one of the best colleges in the city after clearing Class 10 (SSC) examinations.
A picture of Shaikh studying under the lamppost went viral on social media. After the story went viral, good samaritans worldwide contributed money for her dreams.
A total of ₹1.2 lakh was pooled from people across the globe that would allow Shaikh's family to finally receive a roof over their heads and access to necessities.
The girl eventually moved into their new 1 BHK flat on Thursday, reported by The Times Of India.
German Fernandez, a Spaniard, was one of the key figures in making Shaikh's dream a reality. "Reading about this girl moved me," he said. "Education has the potential to improve a person's life quality," he told The Times of India.
As per reports, a Mumbai-based NGO also stepped in to donate ₹3000 each month to support her education.
"I am very happy today," an elated Shaikh told The Times of India after entering into her new house that is going to shelter and nurture her goals.
The Story That Made Headlines
Shaikh's story initially made headlines in 2020, when she passed her Class 10 (SSC) test while living on a pavement in South Mumbai and studying at night under lamps. Her family suffered greatly as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Due to the government's mandated shutdown, her father, a juice vendor, lost a significant portion of his income. She is now pursuing Arts from KC College, Churchgate.
The government decided to close schools, colleges, and libraries last year because of an increase in COVID-19 cases. As a result, Shaikh was forced to take online classes while sitting on the sidewalk. It was not easy for her.
Vehicles used to cause a lot of noise, and sometimes there wasn't enough light, which made studying difficult. In addition, police patrols were frequent, which constituted a problem for her.