Allow him to be a real topper

The highly contested IIT-JEE 2012 results have been declared with Faridabad boy Arpit Agarwal of Modern Vidya Niketan emerging at the top. The boy must be congratulated heartily for his superlative performance. It is no easy task to top the IIT-JEE. The results of this particular exam are watched keenly across the country. The toppers are feted in the media and across the competitive exam fraternity with many centres that provide training to aspirants of such exams brandishing their performance. That’s the ugly part of the accomplishments of these young boys and girls.

Arpit however comes from a middle class family. His father is a civil engineer with the CPWD in Delhi and Arpit has made it to the top with sheer hard work and perseverance, if the reports are to be believed. In homes such as the Agarwals, a lot of attention and resource is bestowed upon the aspiring topper in competitive exams and when they emerge at the top, there is a genuine sense of reward, a reward which a typical middle class family is generally bereft of. Arpit’s success signals the arrival of true meritocracy in India, where your background does not matter but only your achievements do. It is a matter of happiness that it is no longer just students from priviledged backgrounds who achieve success in examinations like these.

There are a few things that come to light in such cases. Topping the IIT is a huge achievement but this is just the beginning. The bright young boy that Arpit inevitably is, he should not be burdened with undue pressure. It is a common problem that toppers of competitive exams, thanks to undue pressure of expectation from parents and teachers of the institution he joins, loses out on their inherent capacities and gives in to others’ desires. In this case, one should do well to remember that this does not happen. Arpit should be allowed to choose his stream and further plans as he pleases to.

One also realises that IITs are facing a huge crisis in terms of faculty because most of its alumni are enticed by huge wages in big corporations. Young middle class toppers like Arpit could do well to think about teaching in the future because that’s one way of preparing more boys and girls like him to reach the top. Most importantly, it’s a welcome sign that boys and girls from middle classes are still putting in their best in one of Indian’s premiere competitions of study in a general atmosphere where capitation and easy money seems to fetching the degrees for many.

Arpit stands as a good example and he should be allowed to prosper further to remain one.
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