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After Topping Varsity Exams in Karnataka, These Visually Challenged Best Friends To Prepare for UPSC

The three youth were students of Alva College in Moodbidri and studied alongside sighted student while pursuing their bachelors degree from Mangalore University.

Stacy Pereira | CNN-News18

Updated:November 30, 2019, 8:51 PM IST
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After Topping Varsity Exams in Karnataka, These Visually Challenged Best Friends To Prepare for UPSC
(From left to right) Gururaj, Pradeep Kumar and Nityanand.

Bengaluru: Securing the top three ranks in the Bachelor of Social Work examination from Mangalore University was no mean feat for this trio. Visually challenged best friends Nityanand, Gururaj and Pradeep have studied together since schools and don't intend to stop anytime soon; they now plan to appear for the coveted Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) exam.

Even though results for the several examinations at the university were announced in July, the provisional rank list for the academic year 2018-19 had a surprise for these boys since it was unexpected to see their names as toppers.

The three were students of Alva College in Moodbidri and studied alongside sighted student while pursuing their bachelors degree.

"Our faculty encouraged and motivated us throughout. They helped us with screen-reading software, which made it easier for us to study," said Nityanand, crediting his college for the constant motivation.

Gururaj, who is a son of an areca nut farmer from Belthangady, says he was always interested in maths and science, but very few blind schools teach those subjects beyond class 7.

"Being visually challenged, we are often encouraged to take up humanities subjects. But when we study for the civil service exams, we have to know everything. So our fieldwork as part of the BSW (Bachelor's in Social Work) course will also be helpful," he said.

The three are currently being trained in computers and soft skills at the Dr Reddy Foundation in Bengaluru. With humble backgrounds, their inspiring story led to the state government's Karmika Sahayavani (Labour Department helpline) getting in touch them to offer assistance. The Department of Information and Public Relations (DIPR) also extended support by offering them internships in the department.

After completing their degree, the three had moved to Mysuru and enrolled in an IAS coaching institute. But the classes never commenced, forcing the boys to look for other alternatives.

"We got to know about the Reddy Foundation when we were in Mysuru. They said there will be placements with various MNCs at the end of the three-month course, so we hope that will help as well," says Nithyanand.

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| Edited by: Moonmoon Ghosh
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