Against all odds, story of Niji Kath
Every once in a while, we come across stories that truly touch our hearts and makes us look at life in a completely different way. They stay with us long after we have read about them and inspire us all our lives. The story is of Niji Kath, a young girl who defied all odds to secure first division with the highest aggregate marks from among all government schools students under Kohima district in the HSLC examinations 2019. It is a story of pain, hardship, struggle, tears and sacrifices. It is also a story of success, sheer grit and determination, a story that teaches us to never give up and that everything is possible if we work hard and believe in ourselves.
Niji Kath, daughter of Ahichu Kath, grew up in Kohima and had a very normal childhood. She excelled in her studies and was a star student in her early school days and her parents as well as her teachers had high expectations of her. But unluckily fate had other plans for her. It was in the year 2012, when she was in class 6, that she began to have health issues and she began to fall ill frequently, making her unable to attend school regularly. The next year, she had to miss school for the whole year as she and her parents went from one hospital to another seeking a cure for her illness. However doctors could not rightly diagnose her illness and she continued to struggle.
Despite her illness and pain, she decided to enrol herself in school and continue her studies. She joined St. Joseph School, Chandmari in 2014 as a student in the 7th standard, however she still could not attend regular classes as her health failed to improve and she was bedridden most of the time. But the school authorities were kind enough to understand her situation; in fact they went out of their way to help her and allowed her to sit for examinations even though she could not attend any of the classes. The same story continued for the next two years as she continued to struggle and her health showed no signs of improving.
It was during these three years that Niji’s mother made the greatest sacrifice for her daughter. Along with the duty of looking after her three other children and managing a household, she fully committed herself to help Niji achieve her dreams and began to homeschool her daughter. She also made daily visits to Niji’s school to collect all the school notes from her classmates and also to submit her assignments regularly. It was only through her mother’s sacrifice that Niji was able to get promoted to class 10. Her father also tried his best to help but could not always be there for her as he was posted in Botsa.
It all seemed hopeless and Niji’s health showed no signs of improvement and the family began to despair. It was on the morning of 26th December 2017, a day after Christmas that Niji and her family was blessed with a miracle. Their prayers were finally answered as Niji was miraculously healed of her illness. Her health improved tremendously and she began to feel normal again. The following year with her health restored, Niji joined Government High School Botsa, where her father was a teacher and began attending classes after a gap of four long years. The rest as we all know is history. Niji cleared her HSLC examinations in flying colours with distinctions in four subjects.
Niji today is a happy girl who despite her struggles and hardships is thankful for the life she has and the unending love and support of her near and dear ones. She will be joining Rüzhükhrie Government Higher Secondary School, Kohima where she would be pursuing her higher secondary education in science stream. She one day hopes to become an administrative officer and serve the state and the Naga people.
Niji’s only message for her fellow students is “to challenge themselves and compete with others to be the best, to never give up even when facing hardships, to work hard and be dedicated.”
Niji”s story has truly inspired one and all and we are thankful to her for showing us what life is all about and giving us valuable life lessons. All we can do now is wish her all the best in all her endeavours and let her know that we are indeed all proud to have a daughter of the land like her.