A girl hailing from Haryana named Janhavi Panwar bagged the title of ‘Wonder girl of India’ at just the age of nine.
When most of her friends were studying in the 8th class, Janhavi who was just 14 pursued the second year in her Bachelor’s degree in Arts from Delhi University.
You might be shocked hearing this? Isn’t it?
Janhavi’s mother is a government teacher and a housewife hailing from the village of Malpur. The 14 year old young girl knows not just one or two but eight foreign accents, in addition to basic French, basic Japanese, English, Hindi and Haryanavi languages.
Janhavi’s parents realized that their daughter was very different from most of the kids of her age. Janhavi’s father Brijmohan Panwar recalls in an interview and said, “When she was only one, her vocabulary was equipped with 500-550 English words. When she turned three, she wasn’t admitted to Nursery but directly to Senior KG because she had picked most things at home. As years passed, when we spoke to the school management, they realised Janhavi’s potential by looking at her scores, and she was given special permission to clear two classes in the same year.”
Janhavi’s family was not financially secure. After his father passed away, Brijmohan worked at a private school where he would travel on his cycle. It was only after Janhavi’s birth that he started working in a government school.
“When my wife was pregnant, like most families in rural settings, our family thought it would be a son. But Janhavi’s birth was celebrated with just as much zeal. I’ve always maintained that my daughter is my pride. Girls are in no way secondary to boys.”
He further said, “We are from a traditionally rural background, neither my wife nor I am fluent in English. Even the school Janhavi was studying in, had teachers who would speak on our local dialect, Haryanavi or Hindi. But I would help her as much as I could. I still remember how she first picked up accents when we started speaking to tourists at the Red Fort.”
Brijmohan started downloading English video clips for his daughter.
He said, “She would listen to it once, and she speak in the same accent. It was at the time that I started downloading BBC news videos. She would listen to an hour-long bulletin and within no time, start picking up the accent and speed with which the anchors spoke. I thought it could be something I should encourage.”
As a motivational speaker, Janhavi has spoken to IAS officers and educational institutes across eight states in our country.
Janhavi desires to become a BBC news anchor and pursue a course in mass communication.