The Star Saturday,
November 6, 1999

Movie Star Brings Cheer to Handicapped Children
By Ng Si Hooi

IPOH: Meeting one's favorite movie star in person remains a fantasy for most people; so when four-year-old Sharmila Krishanan received a gift from her idol yesterday, she was thrilled.

According to her mother Nirmala Ramayah, 31, Sharmila who has spina bifida (birth defect that affects the spinal cord), enjoyed watching movies of popular Indian actress Revathy Menon.

"Whenever Revathy appears on television, Sharmilla gets very excites and will focus on the movie," she said.

"She was lost for words when Revathy talked to her and gave her a present," she said at the Sultan Azlan Shah Rehabilitation Centre in Bercham where the actress spent two hours with 51 children and gave them presents.

Tan Chee Wah, 13, also appeared delighted when Revathy stopped to talk to him. He eagerly stretched his hand our to receive her present.

His father, Tan Boon Meng, 61, said, "We don't know who she is but I am glad she came because Chee Wah looks so happy to meet a new friend."

Revathy said she was very happy to have had the opportunity to visit the centre.

"I am involved in some charitable organizations in India; so when they told me I would be coming here, I welcomed the chance to see the development of such organizations in different countries," she said. "The charitable organizations from different countries can learn skills and techniques from each other," she said in an interview after touring the centre.