Meera Carries Bricks On Her Head, Clears Class 10, Can’t Take A Day Off

Meera Khoya Jharkhand NDTV Class 10 Exams Results
Meera had enrolled herself at a private school so she could balance work and studies.
  • Jharkhand teen works on a construction site, clears Class 10
  • Can afford to attend school only on alternate days
  • Wants to go to college, hopes to someday be a cop

Ranchi: Meera Khoya, 16, has just cleared her Class 10 exams, scoring 54%. Teens her age may be relaxing now, glad to be done with the ordeal of board exams. Meera, however, counts 20 rupees carefully as she hires an auto.  She is headed not to meet friends but to a construction site, where, for the next eight hours, she will carry bricks on her head to earn Rs 200 a day.

That’s not the most grueling part of her routine.  Since she turned eight, Meera has woken up at  4.30 in her village near Ranchi, done household chores, and then, on alternate days, attended a small private school or worked as a daily wage earner.  She then headed home to help her mother out in the kitchen before squeezing in two hours with her books before going to bed.

” I want to be a police officer”, says Meera, at the construction site, her head wrapped in a blue dupatta, a flimsy shield from the searing sun. Despite her tremendous accomplishment, reality holds her plans in check. ” I could be a doctor but I don’t have money, so I’ll be a cop.”

Meera Carries Bricks CBSE Class 10 Ranchi
Meera, at the construction site, her head wrapped in a blue dupatta, a flimsy shield from the searing sun.

12 years ago, Meera’s father, a farmer, died.  Her mother takes whatever work she can, sometimes selling a local brew. Meera contributes to the family income. Her younger sister, Anshu, has joined her at the construction site.  Their brother, Aman, is giving football lessons locally to help pay for his college.

Some day, Meera says, she hopes to switch to a better, more expensive school, which will prep her better for her own college plans. But even in their teens, Meera and her siblings have learnt to curb ambition, to temper hope; nothing is more important than just getting by (to help the family, please scroll down for details).

The overwhelming poverty in Jharkhand, one of India’s most backward states, has driven a high school dropout rate, and child trafficking.

“It is indeed very challenging to work with such children . when you compare their need for even one meal a day to their desire to study , it is a challenge ” , says Aradhana Patnaik , in charge of Education in Jharkhand.

Meera’s summer vacation, such as it is, ends in June.  Then, she says, she will get back to dividing her time between ferrying bricks on her head and being in class.
If you would like to help, contribute here:

Pahalo Khoya
A/c no 495410100002531
Bank of India
Tupudana Branch
IFSC – BKID0004954


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  4. I also want to help her but before it i need her ac no. and contact no. in her name. This for information to all concern that there are so many Meeras in our society but no body care. Neither the administration nor the society.

  5. Hi,
    This is Diya Pardasani from Dubai. I read story of Meera from Ranchi.
    I am keen to learn more about her, so I can arrange for some assistance to her in her quench for education.
    Can any one write back to me confirming if above account details of Meera are correct ?
    Send me a letter from the bank’s branch manager confirming the acount details belong either to her or her guardian.

    There are a few friends who are willing to help the girl, but want the help to be channeled directly to receiver.

    Diya Pardasani

  6. Whose ac no is this?who is Pahalo Koya?I want to help her.Please let me know whom should I contact.Contact no,if any.

  7. It is really very sad that, whilst we welcomed the world to study in our universities of yore (Takshashila and Nalanda), our very own struggle to get an education (left alone to fend for themselves).

  8. Please provide a contact number to talk to Meera Khoya, I would like to understand her needs.

  9. We are willing to completely sponsor her higher education by taking care of all the expenses. Kindly provide me direct details on my email id listed below.

  10. kindly open account in name of meera. e mail me. would like to give monthly stipend. help. to study, till complete studies

  11. cant understand, why the ac is not in the name of meera,, why Paholo khoya. some one trying to take advantage of this. can u clarify. i may be one of helper.

  12. Kudos to the indomitable spirit of Meera! May God provide her all the required strength to beat this vicious circle of poverty. Maa Saraswati, bestow her with your kindness! Indeed a reality check for our policy makers and the efficacy of social welfare programmes run at various levels since ages! Readers please contribute for Meera! I just did…


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