The 25-year-old daughter of an auto-rickshaw driver from Malad, Prema Jayakumar, who topped the all-India Chartered Accountancy (CA) examination, attributes her success to her parents. A resident of S B Khan Chawl in Malad, Prema secured an impressive 607 marks out of 800.
She aspires to gift her parents a “life of comfort”. “It would not have been possible without their support and blessings. Despite several hardships and financial problems, my parents always motivated me. I want my father to be rid of the daily arguments with passengers on auto tariff. I want my parents to live a life of comfort,” she said.
Prema started her preparations for CA exams in 2008, after she graduated in B.Com. “Luckily I received a scholarship from my coaching class, so I didn’t have to pay them.” She has applied to big firms for a job and hopes to get a good offer.
She lives in a 280-sq ft room with her father, Jayakumar Perumal, who has been an auto driver for over two decades, mother and housewife Lingammal Jayakumar, and younger brother Dhanraj (22). “I was always good with numbers and finances and I was confident about passing the exam. But securing the first rank was something I had never imagined. I was happy for myself and my family and for the new life we will have,” she said.
Dhanraj has also cleared the same exam. “We expect to secure good jobs and take care of our family together,” she said.
Her father shifted to Mumbai 25 years ago from Periyakolliyur village in Tamil Nadu, in search of a job. He started driving an autorickshaw to support his family. “I have been driving this auto for 20 years now and that is how I raised my children. I wanted my children to lead a better life and encouraged them to study. Today they have made me proud,” said Jayakumar.