Two Indian girls, namely Raisa Gulati and Aditi Nair, were honoured recently in Britain after their essays won big at the Queen's Commonwealth Essay Competition 2021. Aged 14 and 15-year-old respectively, they were runners-up in the contest, with Nair being the senior runners-up and Gulati occupying the junior position. The senior winner was a girl from Kenya named Kayla Bosire, where as the junior winner was Uganda's Ethan Charles Mufuma.
The teenagers got the opportunity to travel to London, where they were honoured by the Duchess of Cornwall at St. James Palace. They also attended a writing workshop in the country, along with seeing places like Westminster Abbey and Cambridge University.
About Their Essays
The topic of the both the essays was COVID-19 and its impact. Aditi Nair's entry was titled as 'Prithvi Mata' (Mother Earth) that focussed on the pandemic's positive impact on the nature around us. She explains to The Times of India,"I used the earth goddess to symbolise the positive impact the pandemic had on nature. In my story, she looks younger and more radiant. But when COVID-19 cases recede and humans start interacting again, she looks haggard again. Thirty years later, she ends humanity." Raisa Gulati's essay called 'Autobiography of Corona' that focussed on lockdowns and vaccinations foiling COVID-19's efforts to wipe out the human race.
For Nair, it was the first time she travelled to London. "Britain is different from India but in a very nice way," she added. The girls also revealed that while they did not get to personally interact with the Duchess, they did get to talk to some esteemed guests, like the House of Commons speaker. Nair said, "It was nice meeting Camilla, though we didn't get to talk, But I got to speak to others like the speaker of the House of Commons. It was a really grand palace and we got to see the chair where the monarch sits I could feel the history of the place."
Currently, Aditi Nair is a student at the Sanskriti School in New Delhi. Raisa Gulati studies in Mayo College Girls School, a prestigious boarding school in Ajmer. Apart from her writing prowess, she can also play the tabla and drums and loves to sketch in her free time.