Tapas; a ladder for poor students to achieve their dream for an IIT seat

Bangalore June 27: A son of a daily-wage construction laborer topping the IIT-JEE entrance exam? Son of daily wage earners getting into the top notch and premier technical universities of the country? Are situations like these possible these days? Yes! Why not? When noble institutions like ‘TAPAS‘, an intiative of RSS inspired Rashtrotthana Parishat Bangalore; take up yeoman tasks of uplifting sections of the society such miracles do happen! Do read further…


Prashanth, son of a construction worker and Ragahavendra Valmiki, son of a daily wage earner always dreamed of studying in India’s premier technological institutions like the IIT but their financial background and conditions at home threatened to derail their dreams. Thousands of such bright young minds have such dreams but are forced to hold back due to their financial and social status. But today Prashanth, having secured the 255th rank and Ragahavendra Valmiki getting the 1007th rank in IIT-JEE have ensured a promising future themselves. Thanks to ‘Tapas‘, a free residential programme initiated by Rashtrotthana Parishat, an organization inspired by the RSS, which has avowed to turn the dreams of the brightest among the underprivileged into reality.

As many as 34 students from very poor backgrounds have completed second Pre-University (PU) this year from ‘Tapas’. The students selected for the programme have fared well in CET, JEE Main and JEE Advanced too. This year, 30 out of 34 students qualified in JEE Main and were eligible to appear for JEE Advanced and 7 have qualified in the JEE-Advanced and become eligible for entry into Indian Institute Technology.

While Prashanth from Mysore secured a ranking of 255, Ragahavendra Valmiki from Koppal stood 1007, Devraj Shamraj Hoodal was at 3137, Ravikran from Yadgir is 4469, HS Prajwal from Bengaluru stood 5534, HS Ranganath was at 5701 and Mohan R Nayak from Shimoga secured 7896th rank. Another notable fact is that 10 students from Tapas have stood within the first 1000 ranks in Common Entrance Test conducted by the Karnataka Examination Authority and 20 students have secured ranks within the first 2000.

Ragahavendra Valmiki- Tapas Student - IIT Achiever
Ragahavendra Valmiki- Tapas Student – IIT Achiever


What is Tapas?

Tapas is a nation-building initiative started in 2012 by Rashtrotthana Parishat in the field of education, with academic support from BASE. Its focus is on enabling the brightest among the needy sections of the society, with the broader goal of empowering them as growth drivers. As the leader in student training in Karnataka, BASE prepares students to take on highly competitive exams like IIT-JEE, AIEEE, CET, NTSE, and various Medical entrance exams conducted by top medical institutions in the country.

Currently there are 76 students pursuing PUC I and II. The first batch of 34 students completed their PUC education this year.


Dreams Fulfilled

Prashanth from Mysore who secured the 255th rank in IIT-JEE says that if he was not selected by Tapas, his dream of getting into the IIT would never have fulfilled. “My father is a construction worker and that is the only source of income for my family. Both my elder brother and sister are studying too” says Prashanth. It was due to the encouragement of the principal and good coaching by the teachers which enabled him to crack the IIT-JEE, he says. He wishes to continue his post-graduate studies in IIT itself.

Raghavendra Valmiki who got a good rank of 1007 in the ITT-JEE, hails from Koppal. His father and mother are both employed at the Khadi and Village Industries Commission. “It was the discipline followed at Tapas, adhering to schedules and well planned lifestyle that enabled me to achieve this”, he says. If it was not for Tapas which recognized him and encouraged him to study, it would not have been possible for someone like him who is from a very humble background to even attempt ITT-JEE stresses Raghavendra.


“Reaching the unreached and bringing them to main stream is the key objective of Tapas. We are humbled to see all 34 students of batch one will get into prestigious institutes and come out as great engineers who will uplift their family and transform the society they are part of. At Tapas we focus on building character along with sharpening their skills for entering IITs,” said Dinesh Hegde, General Secretary, Rashtrotthana Parishat. Dr HS Nagaraja, Founder Director of BASE, said, “This is a unique initiative by Rashtrotthana and BASE to provide free training to the deserving students who have excelled well in their studies. There are lots of students in the weaker sections of the society from rural areas who are really outstanding in their field of studies and are waiting for the right training to help them reach their aspirations.”

How Tapas does it!

Every year Tapas selects 30-40 most promising boys, studying in Class X and offers them free PU Education and trains them for the IIT-JEE. A selection test is conducted at all district headquarters and additional towns in Karnataka on 25th December every year. Selection test is free of cost. Based on the performance in the above test, Level I of the selection process is done. Then Tapas representatives will visit the homes and schools of selected students to ascertain their interest and motivation to pursue the program. Based on this, Level II selection is done. Students selected at Level II will attend a 3-day residential training program. Here, students will be taught in select topics in Physics, Chemistry and Maths. At the end of the 3 day program, the hopefuls will be assessed on the topics taught. Apart from this, the ability of students to work hard, ability to stay away from home will also be assessed. Based on the performance and subsequent assessment in this 3rd level, final selection for Tapas will be done.

The program at Tapas to help the students prepare for IIT Entrance Examination covers exhaustive content in Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics. The content provided by BASE, covers the related topics with quality synopses and is followed up with adequate worked examples and practice exercises. Classroom sessions are interactive and are backed by multimedia presentations. Regular tests are conducted to prepare the students for the rigorous IIT Entrance. Answers to questions in these practice tests are discussed in the classroom.

Beyond classroom teaching, Tapas facilitates effective study techniques and time and stress management skills too. With an eye to equip its students with life skills, Tapas nurtures their interpersonal communication, structured thinking and creative problem solving. Discipline is given top priority. A day’s schedule includes Yoga, meditation, plenty of time for reading, interactive sessions with achievers like Magsaysay award winner Dr Harish Hande regularly to enhance their self-confidence.

Rashtrotthana Parishat was established in 1965 with the objective of rendering service to the society through promoting Jana Seva, Jana Jagruti and Jana Shikshana. The activities of Rashtrotthana Parishat include Educational, Health, Yoga centres, Sahithya and Non-Formal Educational Programmes. It has 66 educational institutions in all parts of Karnataka including 4 CBSE schools.


Information related to the selection exam and criteria can be requested from Rukmini (9481201144), head of exam department and Maheshwarayya (9481240771)

‘Tapas’ can be reached at the following address:

The Co-ordinator,

Tapas @ Rashtrotthana PU College, 115, Arkavathy Layout, Thanisandra Main Road, Bengaluru 560 077.

Tel: 080 2846 5150

Email: tapas@rvkb.edu.in

Details of the program and organization is available at  http://www.tapasedu.org/

(Report by Prashanth Vaidyaraj for VSK-Karnataka)

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