“More or less same”- This statement has no significance in competitive examinationThe boy was really good. The girl was also very good. In every mock test, the boy used to score 190 to 195 out of 200. The girl used to score 180 to 190 in mock tests. Other students and teachers used to state that they were more or less of same standard. I always disagreed.
After rigorous practice of three months, the candidates appeared in the Non-Technical Popular Category (NTPC) examination conducted by a Railway Recruitment Board (RRB) in northern India. Another two months passed. The result was declared. The boy came out with flying colours! He got a job in Northern Railway! The girl did not find her name in the list of successful candidates.
But fortunately the girl was not disheartened. She came back to the coaching institute and started practising with renewed vigour. After another two months, she appeared in another NTPC examination conducted by another RRB. This time she was not disheartened. She qualified the examination and got a job in Indian Railways.
I was also happy. My student had learnt a valuable lesson. In the cut-throat world of competitive examination, 'more or less same' has no value. You have to score more than at least 99.9% candidates to be successful.
(Competition entry for Topic for TOW monthly contest for August 2017)