The pride in the voice of the father is unmistakable as he talks about his three daughters. He is determined to see that all three of them become graduates.
His focus now is his eldest daughter, who scored an impressive 94 per cent in her PUC or pre-university college exams. She studied Physics, Chemistry, Maths and Biology - a combination of subjects better known as PCMB. She will be taking the Common Entrance Test for admission to professional courses in Karnataka at the end of this week. Her dream is to become a doctor and she will also be appearing for the much-delayed NEET exam.
But there is a challenge for this obviously determined and academically inclined student. So much of training, coaching, education, is online these days with the coronavirus pandemic leading to the cancellation of physical classes, and the family's phone is a basic model.
Her father is hoping for help to get a smartphone to help in the education of his academically bright daughter.
He works washing cars in north Karnataka and says he earns around Rs 6,000 a month. He has borrowed money from his relatives and the family has sold his wife's gold ornaments to fund the education of the bright girl and her younger sisters. A smartphone that would work well for online classes, he says, is beyond the family budget.
Many students and families have been facing challenges like this when it comes to online education, leading to a digital divide.
Schools and colleges across the country were closed in March ahead of a nationwide lockdown imposed by the central government to slow the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. Classes at most schools and colleges across the country are being conducted online, something the government has encouraged amid the lockdown.