Newspaper boy clears IIT entrance

Newspaper boy clears IIT entrance

He delivered newspapers every morning to make enough money to pay for his high school fees. Prashanth C, an IIT aspirant from Mysore, did not even know what IIT was until his Class X. One day, he saw an advertisement for an entrance test TAPAS, a free training programme for PUC and IIT coaching for students from poor economic background.

Encouraged by his teachers, he wrote the exam and got through, too. Now, he has secured 255th rank in the recently held JEE (Advanced) and hopes to secure a seat in IIT Chennai or Mumbai. TAPAS is a joint initiative by Rashtrothana Parishat and Base.

Of the 34 students selected last year for the programme, 30 qualified in the JEE (Mains) exams, and of these 30, seven qualified in the JEE (Advanced), too, making them eligible for admission to IITs.

“Electronics is my first preference followed by either mechanical or aerospace,” said Prashanth. His father is a daily wage labourer and mother a homemaker. Completing his high school itself was a challenge and he did not dream of anything big for his life. Having studied in Kannada medium in a school in Mysore, Prashanth initially faced difficulty in coping with the coaching.

“They taught us rigorous discipline and I put all my focus on it. The interest has to come from within. This only proves the power of the mind and what one can achieve with sincere efforts,” he said.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, another candidate Raghavendra Walmiki, a student from Koppal district who has secured Rank 1007, said he too would not have dreamt of a seat without the push of the training. “In Koppal, there are no coaching institutes for either CET or IIT,” he said, adding that his other option would have been to continue in the Navodaya School where he completed studies till Class 10 and even though he was interested in pursuing engineering, he may or may not have got through the entrance tests.

The other students who have cleared the exam are: Prajwal H C, Devraj Shamraj Hodal, Mohan R Naik, Ranganath S R and Ravi Kiran.

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