More than 490 Delhi government school children have cleared NEET this year, with Kushal Garg from RPVV Kishan Ganj and Isha Jain from RPVV Surajmal Vihar scoring 700 out of 720.
The NEET results had been declared by the National Testing Agency (NTA) on November 1. According to an official from the Education Department, 496 students from across these schools have cleared the exam this year.
Of them, the highest scores have been achieved by Kushal and Isha. Kushal has secured an all-India rank of 168 and a rank of 9 in the EWS category. With AIIMS Delhi having offered 11 EWS seats last year, he finds himself standing a chance of being admitted into an institute that he thought was impossible.
Neither of Kushal’s parents had been to college, though his mother completed schooling till class XII and his father had completed class X. His father works as a carpenter in Delhi.
He said that he was unsure about preparing for NEET until late in his final year at school.
“I was not very sure about whether I should focus on JEE and NEET, I knew that both were very difficult. In January 2020, I began following some YouTube channels. Then I got selected for the free coaching programme with the Dakshana Foundation and started coaching online with them from July. I sat for NEET that year and got a score of 531. Then in December 2020, they called me for the offline coaching programme in Pune. The pandemic had not been easy for my parents, but despite everything and in the middle of Covid, they supported me, let me go and helped me buy some clothes to go there,” he said.
“My aim had been to cross the score of 650, I never thought that getting this rank would be possible,” he said.
Isha has an all-India rank of 153. “To be honest, with my score, I thought I would be in the top 100,” she said. She had also attended coaching classes for a year after she completed school in 2020. Despite having cleared the scholarship entrance test for coaching at Aakash Institute, her family had to put together
Rs 85,000 for her preparation. “This is something my family and I wanted. There are no doctors in my family and my mother had wanted me to be one,” she said.
Some individual government schools have a large number of students who have cleared the exam. This is highest at the Sarvodaya Kanya Vidyalaya, Block C, No. 1, Yamuna Vihar, where 51 students cleared the exam. Last year, 40 students had cleared the exam. However, school head Seema Wadhwa said that a few more steps have to be taken to ensure that the students’ journey to medical college is completed.
“We will call these 51 students to school and throw a party for them, and the next batch of aspirants will interact with them. They will create a WhatsApp group and help them through every step of the way. We have been creating this kind of support system every year for about the last five years. Our Biology teacher also takes great interest in them… However, our students come from underprivileged backgrounds and many of them have got just qualifying marks, not very high ranks. This means that they will be eligible for private institutes which they can’t afford. Just clearing NEET is not enough, we have to make sure that they get into good institutes. I have appealed to the government that perhaps some kind of financial assistance can be provided to help them,” she said.