Pune girl Muskan Abdullah Pathan who emerged as the national topper at the Indian Certificate for Secondary Education (ICSE) Class 10 examinations says the news has taken her by complete surprise. Unable to come to terms with the fact that she has grabbed All India Ranker number one rank by scoring 99.4 per cent, the girl said she scoured all available websites to confirm if she indeed is the top ranker.
“Until Class 8, I didn’t even finish amongst the top 10 in school. By Class 9, I suddenly picked up and became the school topper. It was at that time that I decided that I have to crack my Class X board examinations with top scores but even I couldn’t imagine that I would get the topmost rank. I thought how can it be? So I began checking all the possible websites and didn’t believe it till the school directly called me,” she said.
The student of Hutchings School, Pune which incidentally had another student amongst top 3 in ICSE examinations last year score is as follows — English 99 marks, Hindi 97 marks, Social Studies 99 marks, Maths 100 marks, Science 99 marks and Commerce 100 marks. Though happy with her top scorer status, she says she had hoped for full marks in Social Studies which she had studied for in great detail.
An aspiring medical student whose mother Shakira Pathan is a doctor and father Abdullah is a software engineer, she has already enrolled in a tutorial for preparation of NEET entrance which is two years later.
A swimmer and badminton player, she says she didn’t give up co-curriculars and served as the discipline in-charge of her school as well as a prefect in Class X. Having studied for 5-6hours on a daily basis, she advises students not to over-pressurise themselves with studies to maintain a balance.
Meanwhile her parents who have been receiving congratulatory messages since afternoon say that they also didn’t expect this kind of success. “We expected around 97-98 per cent but All India Topper is something else. It’s a bit overwhelming and I am short of words to describe what I feel,” said mother Shakira.