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The story of the Dantewada girl in textbooks


The saga of the girl from the insurgent Chhattisgarh-stricken Dantewada district, who braved Naxal’s bullets to save her younger brother from a Maoist attack six years ago, has made its way into textbooks .

The saga of the young girl from the insurgency-stricken Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh, who braved Naxal’s bullets to save her younger brother from a Maoist attack six years ago, has made its way into textbooks .

The National Council for Educational Research and Training (NCERT) incorporated the story of Anjali Singh Gautam, who escaped carrying her injured brother despite being shot in the shoulder by Maoists while she was pursued by ultras on a fateful night, in the CBSE Program for class 5.

“The program will be presented from the next academic session,” a spokesperson for the Chhattisgarh government said on Monday.

“It is an honor for her and my family that her bravery has found a place in the government textbook,” said her father, Avdesh Gautam.

Anjali, then 14, took her younger brother Abhijeet on her shoulder and started running away from her home in the village of Nakulnar in Dantewada district after around 500 armed ultras invaded the building at the search for her father at midnight on July 7, 2010.

The rebels broke into the room where her uncle and a domestic helper were sleeping and shot them both. The insurgents then broke into his room and started shooting. Her brother was shot in the left leg. Despite the situation, Anjali carried his injured brother on his shoulder and walked through the armed Naxals. She refused to heed the warnings from the Naxals to shoot her if she didn’t stop. She later ran to her grandfather’s house, a few yards away, even as the bullets flew past her. She collapsed from exhaustion after reaching her grandfather’s house. The next morning, his grandfather rushed his injured brother to the district headquarters hospital. His parents had fortunately escaped Naxal’s attack. She was honored in 2011 with the National Bravery Award by then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

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