The villagers said they saw the sexagenarian woman going to Hogolbaria Purbo Para Government Primary School in the village with books accompanied by two other fifth grade girls.
At first sight, anyone could think she was taking her grand daughters to the school. But they are classmates of her and she is a regular student. She is going to seat for the primary school certificate examination (PSC) scheduled for November 20.
Basiron is the mother of one son and two daughters. She stays with her son Mahiruddin. Her grandchildren are studying at colleges and schools. She fell in love with studying when she saw them her grandchildren study.
She was admitted to the school in 2011.
Her venerable age did not deter her from attending classes after crossing a kilometre long muddy stretch to the school.
Basiron said she was a victim of child marriage because of lifelong poverty which afflicted her father.
Her son Mahiruddin said it was unfortunate that his mother was deprived of education. He expressed his pride in her for keeping the dream to study alive.
She was criticised by many villagers for going to school at her age but she ignored them. The naysayers have now become some of her biggest fans and supporters.
When our correspondent visited the school, he found Basiron was studying with her classmates.
She takes part in games and sports during recess with other students.
She said: “I first came to this school six years ago but teachers refused to admit me.”
Helaluddin, the headmaster of the school, admitted Basiron had applied in 2010 but was rejected because the teachers thought she was merely emotional and would not be able to continue her studies.
He said: “Upon seeing her interest, we consulted with the upazila education officer and admitted her in 2011.”
He praised her hand writing and expressed his faith in her passing the PSC exam.
Basiron’s classmate Mou said she was very attentive in her studies and co-operative as well.
Her daughter-in-law Jahanara Begum said her mother in-law was a good person.
Her neighbor Parvin Khatun said she was uneducated like many others but felt an increase in interest to be educated upon seeing Basiron, who was her mother’s age.
Mathmura Union Council Chairman Shohel Ahmed said: “Basiron is an example to people who are yet to be literate.”
He declared that he would help anyone like Basiron.
Gangni Upazila Education Officer Akbar Ali said: “Basiron has proven that age is not a bar to acquire knowledge.”
Basiron said she hopes to pass the PSC exam and get admitted into high school.