Raghuvendra Rai was 12-year-old when his father’s accident derailed his life in 2014. Apart from tending to his bed-ridden father, handling his tiffin service and his studies, Rai also began looking after his sister — a special needs child. The strain on finances increased over time, and Rai was shifted from a private school to a government school, but his dreams of becoming an engineer only grew stronger.
“I couldn’t afford the private school or coaching classes. I studied at a Delhi government school in Dwarka. Thankfully, a coaching institute offered a discount when they realised I have the aptitude but not the means. I have faced so many adversities since childhood that I want to be successful,” said Rai, who scored 93.5 percentile in the JEE Mains exam.
Rai has charted out his onward journey — B.Tech in Mechanical or Electrical engineering, followed by a plush job.
On September 11, the JEE results for BTech were released, and along with that emerged stories of students who fought all kinds of odds to clear the exam with flying colours.
Among them is Jayant Kumar, son of a security guard, who scored 93.23 percentile. Kumar studied at a government school in Vasant Kunj and lives in a one-room rented house with his parents and siblings.
There is also 17-year-old Sonu Kumar Pandit, a student of a government school in Sarojini Nagar, who secured 97.48 percentile in his JEE exam. He is going to be the first person in his family to pursue higher education.
“My father is a moulding contractor and mother is a homemaker. There was never enough money to take coaching classes for these exams but my parents supported my dream of cracking this. The principal of the government school I went to was supportive. He pushed me to explore my options,” said Pandit, who hopes to pursue BTech in Computer Science, and “then a job at Amazon”.
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