Mumbai chawl girl tops CA exams
Daughter of a
migrant Tamilian, an autorickshaw driver here and living in a
small tenement, Prema Jayakumar is now on top of the world, having
topped the nationwide chartered accountancy (CA) exams. Since the
exam result was announced, the family has been receiving phone
calls from the media, top Indian and foreign companies »
Maharashtra Governor K. Sankaranarayanan Friday felicitated Prema
Jayakumar for topping the chartered accountancy (CA) examinations,
an official said.
At a function in Raj Bhavan, the governor awarded Prema Rs.1 lakh
and asked her to take care of her parents, autorickshaw driver
Jayakumar Perumal and his home-maker wife, Lingammal.
Sankaranarayanan also invited Prema, her younger brother Dhanaraj
and their parents to attend the Republic Day function with VVIPs
at Raj Bhavan Saturday.
Prema was accompanied by Dhanaraj - who also cleared the CA exams
in his first attempt - and Ancy Jose, principal of Nagindas
Khandwala College, Malad, where she studied.
Daughter of a migrant from Tamil Nadu, Prema lives with her family
in a tiny 300 sq. ft. tenement in a congested and noisy
neighbourhood in Malad, a north Mumbai suburb. Her achievement
stunned the nation earlier this week.
Ever since the exam result was announced, the family has been
besieged with phone calls from the national and international
media, with top Indian and foreign companies eager to hire her.
Along with Prema, 24, her 22-year-old brother also cleared the
same CA exam, the results of which were announced Jan 21. Prema
had scored 607/800 marks.
Speaking to hordes of mediapersons thronging their home the past
couple of days, Prema said that her father earned around Rs.15,000
per month, barely sufficient to sustain the family. He came to
Mumbai from Tamil Nadu over two decades ago.
Earlier, Prema's mother worked in a small private company.
"Our parents never restrained us from studies because of monetary
issues. My mother stopped working when we (the brother-sister duo)
started our articleship (CA internship) and earned around
Rs.12,000 per month," Prema said, holding her mother's hand as her
"Now I want my father to rest. He deserves it," Prema said, adding
that she and her brother planned to take up jobs soon and take
over the family's responsibilities.
Prema is no stranger to academic achievements and accolades, which
started coming her way early in her academic life.
At her school and later at the Nagindas Khandwala College, Malad,
she was granted nominal scholarships which helped cover her
Later, at the CA coaching institute, she got a scholarship of
Rs.40,000, solving the family's acute financial problem.
Dhanraj chose not to burden his elder sister and worked in a call
centre to supplement his income, which went towards his
Prema proved her worth for every scholarship and in 2008, she
stood second in the B.Com. examinations of the University of
Mumbai, followed by a good performance in her post-graduation.
In Nov 2012, the duo appeared for the CA finals.