Ajay R Raj, a visually impaired student from Thiruvananthapuram, emerged as the all-India topper in the differently abled category of the CBSE Class XII board examinations, by scoring 98 per cent marks.

Ajay, a student of the St Thomas Higher Secondary School in the capital, topped the category with an impressive score of 490 out of 500. The son of an autorickshaw driver from Kozhikode, Ajay has been suffering from diminishing eyesight from his fourth standard onwards, caused due to venous insufficiency. However, he was determined to not let the condition pull him down in life.

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A student of the humanities group, Ajay used to record all the lectures from school and store it in his phone and laptop. He would listen to them whenever he found free time. Ajay had studied at a Malayalam medium school in Thottipalam up to his Class X, which he had passed with high marks as well. He then opted for CBSE syllabus at St Thomas HSS, and took to English medium learning like duck to water.

Ajay said he plans to join the graduation programme in English literature from the Delhi University and would like to pursue a teaching career in order to help children from the rural areas  “I thought of getting good marks, but not a rank. I dedicate my rank to my parents, teachers and friends. I would like to pursue a teaching career and help children belonging to the rural areas,” Hindustan Times quoted the teen as saying.

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Kerala also secured the second rank in the differently abled category, thanks to Lakshmi PV of Palghat Lions School, Palakkad who finished behind Ajay with 486 marks. She had secured A1 for all subjects in her SSLC exam but her right arm was paralysed by illness around two years back. Lakshmi, who is awaiting her NEET results, also wants to take up teaching like Ajay but in colleges.