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A dancer who aims to become a doctor


Neelima showing one of her awards. -- Photo: K.R. Deepak

She is only 13 but has already given more than double that number of dance performances. Meet, Ch. Neelima, a Std. VIII pupil of Timpany School, who has carved a niche for herself as a Bharatanatyam exponent, besides striking gold in roller skating championships.

It was Neelima's father, Ch. Satyanand, joint general manager in Hy-Grade Pellets Limited, who encouraged his daughter to learn dance at the age of six. She did her arangetram in 1997 and from then onwards there was no looking back for her. She has given several performances in different parts of the country and won several awards.

She is also a swimmer and had bagged a bronze in her childhood. She however does not take swimming seriously but has plans to pursue roller skating.

Neelima has given several performances which include the one organised by the Tirumala Tirupathi Devasthanams during the Brahmotsavam at Tirumala in September, 1999; the two-hour solo performance organised by the Bharata Choodamani Dance Academy (Chennai) in the same year; the solo performance during the diamond jubilee celebrations of the Thyagaraja Trust (Tirupathi); and the one at the mini festival of music and dance organised by the Visakha Music Academy in 2001.

Visakhapatnam Urban Development Authority and Snehanjali jointly chose her for the `Super Kid' award in 1997. She bagged the Bala Ratna award, instituted by the Dasari Narayana Rao Cultural Academy, in 1999 and secured a gold medal in the Karnataka State competition in Bharatanatyam conducted by the Gopinath Dance Nyasa at Bangalore.

Neelima has won five gold, two silver and two bronze medals during her nine-year stint as a roller skater. Beginning her career with a silver at the 31st National Roller Skating Championship held at Thiruvananthapuram in 1993, she went on to bag a gold medal in `free style artistic skating' and a bronze in figure skating at the 33rd Nationals held in Kolkata in 1995.

She also bagged two gold medals in figure and free style artistic skating in the 1998 State championship and the next year she received the "Ugadi Purashkar' from the Madras Telugu Academy.

Also into swimming, she had bagged a bronze in her childhood. She, however, does not take swimming seriously but has plans to pursue her roller skating career. Though she aspires to make a mark as a dancer at the international level, she gives equal importance to studies.

"My aim is to become a doctor", she says and given her determination there need be no doubt that Neelima can achieve her goal.

B.M.G.

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