Elusive Community Certificates Continue to Shatter TN Students’ Dreams – The New Indian Express

Express news service

VILLUPURAM / KALLAKURICHI: It is 2021 and the world is witnessing dramatic changes in the way people live and treat each other. But, for 50 teenagers from two tribal communities of Villupuram and Kallakurichi, life revolves around obtaining a government document.

Most of them had scored well over 70 percent on high school board exams and dreamed of pursuing higher education. But the refusal of community certificates shattered those dreams. I Vidhya, 17, a member of the Kaatunayakan tribe and living in the village of Kaanai Kuppam, had obtained 481 out of 600 points in class 12 and wanted to obtain a diploma in botany, zoology or chemistry. However, she was unable to enroll in any college because she has not yet obtained a community certificate.

His brothers – I Suresh and I Sukumar of grades 9 and 11 – are also awaiting the certificate. One wishes to become a police officer and the other a doctor. “But we can only dream and not really understand. Our life is like the Tamil saying: you have a fruit in your hand but you cannot taste it, ”Suresh said.

One of the most stressful procedures to obtain the certificate is the anthropology survey, said P Abinaya, another student. “Since we went to school, how will I or one of my cousins ​​know what our traditional occupation was? Do we need to work like our ancestors to obtain the community certificate? “

At least 20 students from the Kaatunayakan tribe of Villupuram district, including those living in Adhanur, Aasur, Poothamedu, Umaiyapurama and Kaanai kuppam, had either joined a private college without a community certificate or lost the opportunity to study in education superior. Some of the students are preparing for the NEET exam, hoping that they will get the certificate someday and need to be prepared.

Students from the Malaikuravan community at Kuthiraichavadi in Kallakurichi.
None of them have a community certificate to pursue higher education;

In addition, the young people shared a common frustration with society and the authorities as they had gone to great lengths to study despite the mental agony of having to face caste discrimination, only to be denied a chance to change. the fate of their community.

TNIE accessed a list of people eligible for the community certificate that had been issued by the anthropology research team. Official sources said it was only a matter of time for Villupuram RDO to issue the certificate; so there won’t be a long delay.

Meanwhile, in Kuthiraichandal in Kallakurichi, at least 10 students, including the five who had completed grade 12 in the past two years with a score of over 85 percent, are now staying at home, helping their parents in the housework. “I obtained 480 out of 600 in class 12 in May 2021. I would have obtained a higher score if there had been an exam instead of the consolidation marks. But what good are these marks if I can’t study further? asks M Balachandar (17).

Balachandar has one more reason to be frustrated. Ms. Bhagyalakshmi (20), her sister who wanted to learn mathematics, was refused a place at a public university after rejecting her admission on the grounds that she did not have a community certificate. However, after his efforts, an order from the CM cell allowed him to join the college in 2019.

Official sources from the Collectorate told TNIE that the RDO has already issued certificates for those who applied earlier in the district and that students in Kuthiraichandal will eventually receive certificates.

Generations pass
(Left) An elderly woman from the Malaikuruvan tribal settlement in Kuthiraichavadi village in Kallakurichi makes a basket.

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