Odisha MLA passes high school exam at 53

Better late than never. This holds true for 53-year-old Bhimsen Choudhury, a tribal leader and a member of the Odisha Assembly, who secured first class marks in this year’s high school exams. He aspires to be an engineer.

The results declared by the Board of Secondary Education (BSE), Odisha, have lifted Choudhury’s spirits. “Right from my childhood, I had an ambition to become an engineer. Therefore, I have decided to pursue a correspondence diploma course either in mechanical or electrical engineering,” he told Deccan Herald on Friday.

The tribal leader from western Odisha managed to secure 360 out of 600 marks. He attributed his success to hard work and determination. “I was determined to clear the tests this time.

Therefore, despite my busy public life, I had followed a study schedule devoting a few hours everyday to prepare for exams,” he said. Interestingly, Choudhury had failed to clear the high school exams in his maiden attempt way back in 1978-79. “I had cleared all the papers but had managed to score only 5 in mathematics against the minimum pass marks of 30,” the first time MLA said.

However, this time, Choudhury scored 51 in mathematics and 91 (his highest) out of 100 in Sanskrit.

Choudhury may be flying high academically but his political career seems to have hit a rough weather. The tribal leader was elected to the state Assembly on a BJP ticket in 2009 from the Bonai constituency in the tribal dominated Sundergarh district. He was suspended by the party after differences cropped up between him and another senior tribal leader  and former union minister Joel Oram, who was then heading the BJP’s Odisha unit.

Though Oram has already been replaced by K V Singhdeo as the president of the state unit of the party, Choudhury’s suspension order is yet to be revoked. “I have requested the party leadership several times to withdraw the suspension order. But no decision has been taken yet,” the MLA lamented.

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