A tribal girl from Nizamabad, Purna Malavath, has made the country proud by becoming the youngest ever woman to scale Mount Everest, the highest peak in the world, at the age of 13 years and 11 months.Purna achieved the feat on Sunday along with her fellow-student Sadhanapalli Anand Kumar (18). They were chosen to carry out the expedition from among 150 children. They reached the peak of Mount Everest, which is at an altitude of 29,035 ft, after a 52-day long challenging expedition.
Prime Minister designate Narendra Modi congratulated Purna. “I was very happy to read this. Congrats to our youngsters. They make us truly proud,” Modi tweeted and shared the news article on the microblogging site. Purna, who comes from a tribal family from Tadwai village in Nizamabad district, is a Class IX student in the social welfare residential school belonging to Andhra Pradesh Social Welfare Residential Educational Institutions Society (APSWREIS). She was born on June 10, 2000 to Laxmi and Devidas, both agricultural labourers.
Anand too comes from a modest background, being the son of a cycle mechanic from A R Pally village in Khammam district. Anand is also in Class IX, and hails from another social welfare residential school. He is the first Dalit to conquer Mount Everest, according to the APSWREIS Secretary Dr R S Praveen Kumar.
Praveen Kumar told the media that he was proud of the achievements of Purna and Anand. “They proved to the world that poverty is no barrier once opportunities are created. We are proud of them. The two students with a higher degree of toughness and endurance were sent to the Everest Expedition in April after being trained at a prestigious mountaineering Institute in Darjeeling,” he said. Trained by Transcend Adventures under the guidance of renowned mountaineer, award winner and expedition leader B Shekhar Babu, these two adventurous teenagers and 47 other mountaineers from China, Germany and Tibet have scaled the highest peak in the world.
The expedition proceeding further from final base camp to the peak was only possible due to the clear weather for the past four days. They carried the photographs of B R Ambedkar and former IAS officer of Andhra Pradesh cadre S R Sankaran and proudly hoisted the tri-colour atop the peak.
The expedition, estimated to cost anywhere between Rs 70 lakh and 74 lakh, was sponsored by Andhra Pradesh government.YSR Congress party president Y S Jaganmohan Reddy on Sunday congratulated the two teenagers for their achievements. Jagan said Purna and Anand had made the whole country proud and lauded them for their high ambitions. He hoped that they would continue to achieve great things in the future. He said that other children and teenagers would take inspiration from them to achieve great things.