In November 2018, a then 96-year-old Karthyayini Amma became the eldest person to clear the state literacy exams in Kerala. According to a report by Business Times, she scored 98/100 in the state government conducted exam which comprised of reading, writing, and mathematics. She was the eldest among 42,933 candidates who appeared for the exam. Hence, she is popularly referred to as ‘Literacy Amma’.
Now with the coronavirus spread and thousands of people turning to self-quarantine, 98-year-old Karthyayini Amma went on to write a letter for those who are in self-isolation, thereby helping elderly people like her, reports India Today.
“Dear children, you have come from far off countries for different purposes. Now you are sitting inside a room for days without interacting with a soul, just to protect people like me and my children. Your love makes me tear up We will all face this coronavirus together. Thank you once again, my children,” she writes.
Karthyayini Amma went on to advise the public about taking precautions against the virus and maintaining proper hygiene in the letter.
“Whenever you return home, make sure you properly wash your hands. You must clean your hands before playing with kids. Do not touch your face, eyes or ears. People coming from outside should be allowed inside only after properly washing their hands and feet.”
The New York Times had reported earlier how the elderly, especially those above 80 years of age, are more susceptible to fatal diseases because of underlying medical conditions and low immunity.
It is crucial for us as a society to understand the gravity of our current situation and practice self-isolation and social-distancing for not just ourselves but the good of others, especially the elderly!