Answer these questions in one or two sentences each. (The paragraph numbers within brackets provide clues to the answers.)

1. Why was the ‘holy man’ who gave Santosh’s mother his blessings surprised? (1)

2. Give an example to show that even as a young girl Santosh was not ready to accept anything unreasonable. (2)

3. Why was Santosh sent to the local school? (3)

4. When did she leave home for Delhi, and why? (4)

5. Why did Santosh’s parents agree to pay for her schooling in Delhi? What mental qualities of Santosh are brought into light by this incident? (4)

1. The ‘holy man’ had assumed that Santosh’s mother wanted a son as the part of the society she belonged to regarded birth of a son as a blessing. However, he was surprised when the unborn child’s grandmother told him that they did not want a son.

2. Santosh, from the very beginning, lived life on her own terms. She was not content with the traditional way of life and was not ready to accept anything unreasonable. One example which proves this is that Santosh, unlike other girls who wore traditional Indian dresses, preferred wearing shorts.

3. Even though Santosh’s parents could afford to send their children to the best schools, she was sent to the local village school due to the prevailing custom in the family.

4. When she turned sixteen and was under pressure to get married, Santosh threatened her parents that she would never marry if she did not get a proper education. Therefore, she left home and got herself enrolled in a school in Delhi.

5. When Santosh informed her parents about her plan to do a part time job to support her education, they agreed to pay for her schooling in Delhi.

This incident shows that Santosh was a strong headed and determined girl who knew her way towards her goal. .

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