For the last one year, Keerthana Srikanth’s life has been primarily about two things — her Class XII ISC board examinations, and the engineering entrances that followed soon after. She spent her time shuffling between Scottish High International School in Gurgaon, and her engineering coaching classes, which took up to four hours of her day, “three to four times a week”. On Monday afternoon, Srikanth’s efforts finally paid off when she secured 99.25 per cent in her board examinations, making her the Delhi-NCR topper, and the second across India.
With a perfect 100 in Mathematics, Physics, and Computer Science, 95 in Chemistry, and 97 in English, she secured 492 marks out of 500. “When my teachers told me about my marks, my first reaction was disbelief,” said Srikanth, who is from the Science stream. With her engineering exams ending last week, she now intends to relax before the results come out next month.
“I want to pursue Computer Science… But I will think it over once the results are out,” she said. Srikanth’s parents described her as “hardworking, responsible, and focussed”. “She has been a dedicated student all her life — she secured 98.2% in her ICSE exams — so we were expecting her to do well this time too. We never thought she would get an all-India rank,” said her mother, Sandhya.
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“I had to attend coaching classes three or four times a week. So my main ISC studying would happen on the days I didn’t have class…,” said Srikanth, who also plays the guitar and violin and has a certificate from Trinity College, London. Shivang Singh, who came second in Delhi-NCR, is also from Scottish High International School. Singh secured 98.75 per cent.
Like Srikanth, he too has a love for music. He learnt the tabla for nine years and is now mastering the drums. “Drums served as a stress buster during my preparations for the boards. Whenever I felt stressed, I would spend 20 minutes playing the drums,” said Singh. He added that he spent most of the year participating in co-curricular activities, and only began preparing for the examinations after September. He now wants to pursue Economics, either from Delhi University or from a Hong Kong-based University. Singh, however, is determined to enter politics later in life, having even coined a slogan for himself — Rajneeti nahi, sevaneeti.
“I got the idea when I participated in Mock United Nations and Youth Parliaments in school. People talk about India being a young country, but youth do not want to enter politics. This is why I want to join,” he said.
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