Thiruvananthapuram: Days after expressing her wish to learn computers, Kerala’s great granny, Karthyayani Amma, who had secured 98 per cent marks in a literacy exam at the age of 96, has got a laptop as gift from the government.
Amma was the oldest candidate and top scorer in the ‘Aksharalaksham’ programme, a flagship initiative of the state-run Kerala State Literacy Mission Authority, with 98 marks out of 100.
As a gesture of appreciation for the achievement, state Education Minister C Raveendranath Wednesday handed over a new laptop to Amma after visiting her at her home in coastal Cheppad village of Alapuzha district.
Clad in a traditional Kerala saree, Amma received the Minister, who himself is a retired college professor, with her trademark innocent smile.
Asked whether she wanted to learn computers, she was quick to reply: “I will study if I get one.”
To her amazement, the minister soon gave her the “surprise gift” of the government- a laptop.
He also found time to initiate the nonagenarian into the world of computers by helping her to press the keys.
Before leaving, the minister extended full support to the further studies of the ‘oldest’ student of the state, family members said.
Proving that age is no barrier for learning, Karthyayani Amma had scored 38 out of 40 in writing, and full marks of 30 each in mathematics and reading in the three-module literacy exam.
The proud nonagenarian had also received an ‘Aksharalaksham’ certificate from Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on November 1.
Amma, a mother of six children of whom only two are alive, six grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren, had said that she wanted to continue with her studies at least up to 10th standard and learn computers.
Having cleared the Aksharalaksham exam, she has got direct entry into the 4th grade of the equivalency course of the Literacy Mission.
Once she has cleared the six-month 4th grade course, she can join the 7th grade equivalency programme and subsequently the 10th standard course, the Mission officials had said.