'Super' man steals the show
Hundreds of parents and students , thronged the auditorium of the Shikshakara Sadana on Sunday to see Anand Kumar, the famed founder of Super 30, speak at the Deccan Herald - Prajavani career counselling session 'Mission Admission'.
The charismatic Kumar, speaking in Hindi, wowed the crowd with his uplifting stories of the coaching institute that he founded about 10 years ago. Super 30 has gained fame across the world for its unique coaching programme where 30 students from poor background are trained to prepare for the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs).
In his talk, Kumar started off by tracing the trajectory of two students who enrolled in the Super 30 programme –– Santosh and Anupam.
Santosh was from a poor household, whose parents earned their living by selling vegetables on a highway near Patna.
“When Santosh came to us after Class 10, he had no money, but we could see that he had the passion in him. We started training him and he got into IIT-Kharagpur, and today, he is working at a university in Germany,” said Kumar.
Anupam was another student who lived without even the basic facilities like lighting in his house. “Today, the boy is studying at IIM-Ahmedabad after finishing his degree at IIT-Kharagpur,” said Kumar.
Kumar highlighted that his institute did not take any donation from students. “We do not take any money for the students in the Super 30 course. However, to fund our operations, which includes food and lodging for these students, the staff of Super 30 teach other well-off students during the evenings,” said Kumar.
Kumar said the success of Super 30 has also had some unexpected consequences.
“Many coaching centres have tried to appropriate our brand by claiming to be related to us. For example, there are many fake Super 30 organisations such as Gaya Super 30 and Nalanda Super 30,” he said. He added that recently the Chhattisgarh government shelled out nearly Rs 1.6 crore to someone who claimed to be representing Super 30.
The success of Super 30 also has resulted in dangers to his own personal safety, Kumar said. He recounted two attacks on him, one in which his assistant was stabbed.
Following this, the Nitish Kumar government has provided him with two guards to take care of his security.
Kumar looking at Bangalore
At the Mission Admission event, Anand Kumar evinced interest in admitting two or three poor students from Bangalore for his course. “If Deccan Herald can help in organising an entrance test in Bangalore, I will be glad to admit two or three poor meritorious students from Bangalore,” he announced.