Kozhikode: Twenty paraplegic children attended a two-day residential camp initiated to commemorate Republic Day at Kunnummal near here.
In the programme initiated by Samagra Siksha Block Resource Centre (BRC), the children, aged six to 14, hoisted the national flag at the hilltop, with the active backing of police and forest department personnel. Kunnumal residents volunteered to carry the children to the hilltop.
Eleven-year-old Mohammed Nidam, who hoisted the tricolour atop 'Urithookkimala', also addressed the small gathering of his friends as well as parents and officials.
“I feel like I can stay here forever, I don't want to go back,” he told his friends, most of them also getting out on a picnic for the first time. They would have never imagined they could be atop a hill and spend time there with a campfire.
“We are still not able to forget the delight on the faces of those little children, most of them could not even get out of their house and attend schools. Only three or four of them could walk some distance with support,” Lini UK, one of the resource teachers who took the children to Urithookkimala, said. They children are either enrolled or registered in government schools in Kunnummal limit.
“We took up this responsibility of giving the children, a different experience,” she said. Police and forest department officials also backed the idea.
Nadapuram DySP Sunil Kumar allotted a van and three four wheelers from the department to take the children to the hill top. Forest officials gave them permission to camp there at night.
The children reached Urithookkimala on January 25 along with their parents, BRC officials and police personnel.
They hoisted the national flag and celebrated Republic Day at the hill top.
Urithookkimala is a historically important place, where Pazhassi Raja took refuge. Though a tourist spot of importance, lack of public transport had been a major hindrance for travellers.