Disabled Indian girl wins New Zealand’s top award


A 16-year-old girl, born prematurely in India and having a condition called hemiplegia, has won a prestigious award constituted to honour outstanding achievements of New Zealanders with disabilities, a media report said.

Muskan Devta, a published author and inspirational speaker, was presented with the Supreme ACC Attitude Award for 2015 at Auckland’s Viaduct Events Centre this month, stuff.co.nz reported on Friday.

“Hemiplegia is something I would have to live with throughout my entire life. So why worry?” she said at the awards ceremony.

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Devta earlier won the award in the junior category last year. Her persistent efforts to improve the lives of others also saw her getting selected as a finalist in the youth category of the award this year.

But overcoming a tough competition from the winners of eight other award categories, she won the overall Attitude ACC Supreme Award.

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Though it was hard to make friends and lead a “normal” life when her parents shifted to New Zealand, Muskan found courage in her younger brother Aman and began her mission to make a positive change in the world.

She decided to break out of her shell and became class captain, a roving reporter for the school newsletter and had her own radio show on popular Hindi station Radio Tarana.

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In 2013, Muskan published first autobiography, “I Dream”, to raise money for Starship Children’s Hospital where she underwent corrective surgery. She now aims to raise funds to build two classrooms at a school for the visually challenged children in India.


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