23/04/2016 10:03 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:26 AM IST

97-Year-Old Appears For M.A Economics Exam

In this Thursday, Aug. 5, 2010 photograph, students copy what the teacher writes on the board at a cram school in Kota, India. Every year, more than 450,000 students take the Indian Institutes of Technology (IIT) exam, hoping for entry to the hallowed public engineering institutes located across India. Slightly more than 13,000 passed in 2010, a 3 percent success rate. (AP Photo/Saurabh Das)

Age can never be a barrier for education. This was proved right when a 97-year-old man appeared for his master’s exam on Saturday, 78 years after he became a graduate.

Raj Kumar Vaishya, after graduating from Agra University in 1938, appeared for the exam for a post-graduate degree of Nalanda Open University. As per an NOU official, Vaishya wrote the exam in English and used 23 sheets for his M.A. Economics part one exam, an IANS report said.

Appearing besides students younger than his grandchildren on a hot Saturday afternoon in Bihar, Vaishya, who enrolled for M.A last year to fulfil his long cherished dream, sat for the entire duration of the examination. Vaishya was born in Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh in 1920.

“Despite heat wave that forced people indoors, Vaishya surprised all of us including young candidates, when he appeared at examination centre,” said the NOU official.

Vaishya could not pursue a Master’s degree due to increasing family responsibilities and he retired in 1980 as a general manager in a private firm in Jharkhan’s Koderma.

“I have appeared in exam and now I am a step closer to fulfilling my dream,” said Vaishya who wants to study economics to understand why India has failed to solve problems like poverty.

The NOU also has retired professor Ram Chandra Mishra Madhup, 84, registered for a Ph.D.

Last month, 77-year-old Shiv Charan Yadav of Khohari village in Alwar, who vowed long ago not to marry until he clears the class tenth exam, was busy preparing for it in what was going to be his 47th attempt.

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