In a truly inspiring development, an under-trial prisoner, Suraj Kumar alias Kaushlendra, 23, lodged at Nawada divisional jail, cleared the Joint Admission Test for Masters (JAM) 2022 conducted by The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Roorkee. The exam was conducted at various exam centres across the country on February 13 this year.

JAM is a common admission test conducted every year in February for admission to Master of Science and other post-graduate science programmes at Indian Institutes of Technology, integrated Ph.D. courses at IISc, Bangalore along with other government-funded institutes.

Suraj, a native of Mosma village under Warsaliganj police station, is lodged in jail since April 17, 2021. But he continued with his studies to develop his skills. He took help from educated inmates and jail officials to learn Math and other subjects.

“As his confidence grew, he decided to take the exam,” said a jail official, adding that to everybody’s surprise, he secured 54th rank in IIT (JAM) and that shows his mettle.

Sources in prison said that Suraj earlier studied at Kota in Rajasthan to prepare for engineering examination. In March 2021, a clash between two groups at Mosma village over a drain dispute led to the death one Sanjay Yadav. A case was lodged against 11 named persons, including Suraj, on the basis of the statement of the deceased’s father. Suraj was among four named accused arrested in this connection and forwarded to jail. Seven accused are still at large.

Nawada SDO Umesh Kumar Bharti, who holds additional charges of jail superintendent, told HT that Suraj got 50.33 marks (54th rank) out of 100. His result was published on March 17, but the matter came to light on Wednesday. The administration of correctional services had provided him with books and study material.

“He wishes to study further,” said the SDO. Nawada jail has a capacity of 614 prisoners but presently 1071 prisoners are staying. Yet, despite overcrowding, jail atmosphere and mental pressure, it is to Suraj’s credit that he managed to excel at a prestigious exam.

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