Kailash Kumar is the only male student to have topped in Bihar Board class 12 exams. Kumar has obtained 463 marks out of 500 in the arts stream, however, arts was not his first choice.
Talking to news 18.com, the 18-year-old said, “I aspired to pursue my studies in science stream. I still read up books prescribed to my friends who have opted for non-medical, however, I could not opt for it as science students need coaching classes which would have meant more fees to be paid by my father. Thus I decided on studying arts.”
Kailash’s father is the only breadwinner in the family of five. The family owns a small piece of land which they had to mortgage to a local lender for cash to support the wedding of the eldest sister and education for Kailash and his younger sister, he informed. Now his father works at a local petrol pump to supplement his income.
“The family circumstance had made me make a choice related to my education but I want to change things for the better and hope to work enough that my sister does not have to do the same. I would support her studies and ensure she gets a better environment which is more conducive to studies that I could not get,” said the topper. His younger sister is currently studying in class 8.
Kumar had decided that he would not settle for anything less than rank 1 in intermediate exams while attempting his class 10 paper. “In my class 10 exam, I was writing my paper but my teacher snatched the answer booklet from me. I asked her to give me extra time but she did not. I lost eight marks due to this. I was mocked by others who claimed that I was acting as if I would have topped the exam. At that minute I had decided that I would indeed top my boards and started preparing since,” recalls the teenager.
He said that for his preparation he did not study for long hours but ensured that for as many hours as he studies he does “not waste even a minute”. “I used to give about five hours to my studies daily and during these five hours, I used to study continuously without losing my focus,” he said.
At some point in my life when I have enough finances, I would open a school that provides not only study but also guidance to students like me, said the topper
He now aims to crack UPSC civil services exam and aspires to change the education system in India. “I would put my heart and soul in cracking UPSC exam, I know it is a difficult paper. Since I have got a good rank I will take admission in a college locally where my fee would not be as much. I would start preparing for the UPSC from now on. Once I become an IAS I would make policies that would change the education system to support students who come from rural families. Even if I don’t clear UPSC, I would still become a teacher and at some point in my life when I have enough finances, I would open a school that provides not only study but also guidance to students like me.”
As a reward for his performance in the board exams, Kailash will be given Rs 1 lakh and a laptop from BSEB, however, he is concerned about the cost of the internet to support the laptop and wishes he could get career guidance to put the money to right use.
“I am happy that I will get the laptop as I wish to study further and this would help me get access to a lot of free content via the internet. I would enroll in online classes to prepare for IAS,” said Kailash, while adding, “In my area, online education has some issues, we have long power cuts and sometimes we do not have enough money to support internet. I had to face these issues while studying on my mobile phone during the pandemic. I request the government to support us with career guidance so we can spend the money rightly.”