Grandfather clears Class 12 exams in Tripura


Agartala : A 69-year-old grandfather in Tripura created history of sorts by becoming the oldest student to pass Class 12 exams, results of which were declared Wednesday.

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"I am indeed excited to have cleared the exams and now my goal is to complete graduation in the Arts stream as a regular student," Ramanimohan Pal told IANS over telephone.

Well-wishers and relatives thronged Pal's residence offering him sweets and garlands. "He has shown that education is all about determination and hard work and that there is no age limit for acquiring knowledge," his 63-year-old wife Leela said.

A cardiac patient who underwent a bypass surgery eight years back, Pal was the cynosure of all eyes when he appeared for the exams from a local school in state capital Agartala this year as a private candidate with youngsters in the age group of 17 to 18 flanked on either side.

"I would now apply for admission to B.A. (Bachelor of Arts) course with English, Bengali, Political Science, Economics and Geography as my subjects," Pal said.

He had last appeared to clear the Class 12 exams along with his wife way back in 1967. "I don't know what happened to me, but I decided to walk out of the exam hall moments after the invigilator distributed the question paper on the first day itself," Pal said.

He was then a state government employee.

"My dream of studying and earning a degree however turned into a reality through my children – Debabrata, Mousumi and Jayanta – when they became engineers," he said.

Pal retired in 1996 from Public Health Engineering department.

"I was whiling away my time doing nothing after my retirement. I had enough time in hand but nothing to do. It was then I felt I should complete the unfinished dream of completing my studies," he said.

Pal took his exams so seriously that he went to a private coaching centre in Agartala.

"I went for tuition for about three months before my exams. I studied for about three to fours daily and did write my exam papers quite well," he said. "I felt my brain was jammed all these years. But now after completing my exams, I got a new inspiration and feel as if my brain has been recharged. I am getting some extra energy and the urge to study is becoming even stronger," he said.