Odisha Slum Boy Clears IIT Entrance Exam

P Manoj Kumar, a resident of a slum in Berhampur, Odisha, has cleared the Joint Entrance Examination (Advanced) this year. Kumar has secured the 367th rank in the Economical Weaker Section (EWS) category, making the 18-year-old eligible for a seat in one of the IITs in the country.

Kumar’s general category position is 3,899, according to the JEE(A) result published on October 15. Kumar was aided by a private institution that provided him with coaching free of cost for the last two years. The institution has pledged to help Kumar financially with his admission to an IIT.

Nagaraju, Manoj’s father, said his son had been a topper at the nearby government-run primary. “I am an electrician and earn on a daily basis by attending to calls from various residences for my services. Despite severe financial constraints, I always gave priority to my son’s education,” he said.

After Kumar cleared his class 10 exam, Nagaraju approached the institute’s director Sudhir Rout requesting him to provide free coaching.

“Rout not only agreed to provide free coaching to Manoj but also assured to arrange funds for him for admission,” he said. Many students from the coaching institute and one of Rout’s former student who stays abroad has also assured financial assistance for Kumar.

“For the past several years, we are providing free coaching and financial support for higher studies of poor but brilliant students,” said Rout.

Bikram Kumar Panda, the Berhampur MLA, felicitated the students from the institute, including Manoj, for their achievements in the examination. He also praised Rout for providing free coaching to poor students.

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