With 99.6 per cent (498 out of 500) marks, Jamnabai Narsee School’s Juhi Rupesh Kajaria is one of the two students who secured the first rank in the national merit list of ICSE, the results of which were announced on Tuesday.
Forum Saurabh Sanjanwala, also from the Jamnabai Narsee School in Juhu, bagged the second spot nationally along with city students Anushree Chaudhary (Gundecha Education Academy), Yash Jitendra Bhansali (Sulochanadevi Singhania School) and Anushka Sachin Agnihotri (Children’s Academy).
Of the 36 national toppers — those bagging the first three spots — 14 were from Mumbai and Thane.
Across the state, 21,038 candidates appeared for ICSE examinations from 208 schools. Among them, 31 have failed to clear the exams. Overall, the state has witnessed a pass percentage of 99.85 per cent, where girls have outperformed boys by 0.12 per cent.
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Speaking to The Indian Express, Juhi said, “While I expected marks above 95 per cent, becoming a national topper has come as a shock. As part of my preparations, I appeared for mock tests for most subjects. I solved many question papers and think that’s the best thing to do.”
Kajaria added that she has never been on social media, except for a messaging app on her phone. “I love to read and write. That’s what I used to do in my free time. My friends, teachers and parents have been supportive of me. I am keeping my options open and might opt for either commerce or engineering.”
“I had a lot of fun even during exams,” said Forum, adding that she managed to balance her academics with co-curricular activities. “Even during exams, I used to go for a dance class. Sometimes, I would take a walk in the garden if I felt stressed.”
Also the captain of her school, Forum credits her family for always being by her side. She is at present preparing for JEE exam and hopes to get into IIT.
Zarwan Shroff from Vibgyor High, Goregaon (West) achieved all-India third rank with 99.2 per cent marks. Reading and building Lego is close to his heart, he said. “I am thinking of opting for engineering. I like computers and programming, so I think IT will be a good choice for me.”
His mother Khushnam said, “For exams, Zarwaan did not give up on his phone or play time.”
Of the 32 students who appeared for the ICSE exams from Dhirubhai Ambani International School, 28 have scored 90 per cent and above. The school topper, Raghav Agarwal, scored 98.6 per cent, followed by Arjun Pawar and Siddhant Mukherjee scoring 98.4 per cent each.