Saturday, 10 August 2013

This industrial engineer overcame congenital glaucoma

The story of Naqi Haider Rizvi is truly inspirational for despite his vision problems, he propelled himself to become an industrial engineer through sheer perseverance, belief in oneself and family support. As he says 'disability is not inability'. 

Naqi and his sister have been patients of congenital glaucoma since they were 10 and 7 years old respectively. But thanks to the untiring efforts of his parents and particularly his mother, their 22-year long journey has culminated with his graduating to become an industrial engineer.
To start with, he learned Braille and later on in his eighth grade learned JAWS software which helps in aiding people with visual problems. In the course of time, despite his limitation, he opted for science, resolute to prove to himself that he could do it.

As the British Council was not willing to exempt him from doing away with the examinations, he sought the help of both a reader and a writer to complete his education till the university level.
In 2009, the family moved to Saudi Arabia and Naqi continued his education in Riyadh where the professors were very supportive. All through, his mother was very focused on his education while his father took care of other aspects of life. Naqi is particularly appreciative of his younger sister for not complaining to their parents for all the attention that Naqi was getting.

He needed friends and they too were intrigued with his ways. Thus he could make good friends. However, being unable to see, living independently was a daunting task but he managed to achieve that too. He was in Riyadh while the family was based at Dhammam when he learned various tasks like washing clothes, ironing etc.

In the process he has also used speaking software called Talks which helped in his learning. He has also become conversant in using a mobile, a laptop, and CAD (computer aided design).
Suffice it to say that with his dedication and a strong desire to excel, he was chosen to be the student keynote speaker on the graduation day at his university. Naqi says he wants to continue in the field of academia and has been associated with LVPEI for the past ten years, from 2003.

He insists that people with low vision are not disabled but differently abled. He believes that his success is not a one-man show but the concerted effort of many supportive people. He hopes that his story would motivate other people with similar problems.

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