UP: Teen Who Used Alexa to Foil Monkey Attack Wants to be Engineer, Thanks Anand Mahindra for Job Promise – News18

Nikita Pandey and her niece at her village in UP's Basti district. (Image: News18)

Nikita Pandey and her niece at her village in UP’s Basti district. (Image: News18)

Nikita Pandey, who belongs to a remote village from Basti district in Uttar Pradesh, said this has given her courage to face society and even her parents to continue the fight to pursue her studies

Mahindra Group chairman Anand Mahindra has promised a job to a 13-year-old girl from Uttar Pradesh, who foiled a monkey attack using Alexa. Nikita Pandey, who is from the remote Narayanpur village in Basti district, thanked the business tycoon and said his gesture has given her courage to fight for her education.

“‘Kya karogi padh likh ke, sambhalna ghar grihasti hi hai’ (what is the use of studying when all you have to do is take care of the household) – this is the mindset of the older generation in my village. I am thankful to Anand sir, who has not only promised me a job but also given me enough strength to combat educational disparities in our village,” said Nikita, who appeared for the Class 10 examination this year.

Nikita made headlines for chasing away monkeys with the help of Alexa voice assistant, when she was playing with her 15-month-old niece at her brother-in-law’s home where she was visiting on the weekend.

“I was visiting my sister’s house. She lives in Awas Vikas Colony, which is infamous for monkey menace. Though we generally take precautions and keep the doors locked, that day we forgot to do so after some guests left the house,” she said.

Describing the incident, she said she was playing with her niece on the sofa inside the house when a troop of monkeys entered the room. “Soon after, some headed towards the kitchen while some others came at us. We were both alone in that room,” she added.

She further said it was quite a scary moment and she was glued to the spot not knowing how to react. “It was a peculiar situation as I couldn’t even move, not even to pick up a stick as I didn’t want to leave my niece alone. I thought of yelling and shouting but felt this might worsen the situation and provoke the monkeys to attack us,” Nikita told News18.

As she was thinking about ways to tackle the situation, she saw the Alexa device on top of the refrigerator. “Without giving it a second thought, I immediately shot a command at it and asked it to make barking sounds. In no time, the device started making barking sounds, which scared off the monkeys and they escaped from the balcony,” she said.

Nikita’s presence of mind impressed many on the internet while Mahindra hailed her quick thinking as “extraordinary” and promised her a job after she completed her education.

“The dominant question of our era is whether we will become slaves or masters of technology. The story of this young girl provides comfort that technology will always be an ENABLER of human ingenuity. Her quick thinking was extraordinary,” Mahindra said in a post on X.

“What she demonstrated was the potential for leadership in an entirely unpredictable world. After she finishes her education, if she ever decides to work in the corporate world I hope we at @MahindraRise will be able to convince her to join us,” he added.

Nikita said she learnt about using the Alexa device at school almost two years ago. “I am thankful that my teachers have made us familiar with this technology,” she added.

Though she has always wanted to be an engineer, she has often hesitated about sharing her dream goal with her parents, she said. “The older generation here feel studies are not meant for girls, and they can only look after their home. But, Anand sir’s promise has given me courage to face my parents and others, and to tell them that I want to pursue engineering,” she added.

“Nikita has proved us all wrong. She is free to pursue her career in whichever field she wants. I am thankful to Anand ji for such a nice gesture. Indeed, there is nothing that girls cannot do,” said her mother Vijay Lakshmi Pandey.