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From Rights And Duties To Managing Ambitions – Key Takeaways From Pariksha Pe Charcha 2020

Pariksha Pe Charcha 2020

The third Pariksha Pe Charcha, held on 20th January 2020, saw wide coverage across the country. In his third outreach, Prime Minister Narendra Modi sat down with students to discuss issues related to exams, life, careers, and the stress connected to that. The Prime Minister also went through an exhibition of paintings made by various students, many of which featured themes from the environment, underscoring Mr. Modi’s key messages related to exam management, water conservation and plastic waste reduction.

The event, held for the third year at Talkatora Stadium in New Delhi, saw a huge response, with 2000 students from Delhi/NCR region attending the event in person, while students from various other parts of the country and the Indian diaspora joining in via video links and radio. Nearly 10 crore students had joined in last year. This year too saw even higher participation – more than 30 crores students joined from within India and abroad. The program was preponed to January this year, after thousands of students had exhorted the PM to do so, before exams. Mr. Modi ensured that #WithoutFilter was the underlying theme, so that kids could talk candidly without fear.

Prime Minister Mr. Modi has always been very vocal about the need for students to be fit, stress free and encouraging them to take on challenges with confidence, including examinations. He had also written the extremely popular Exam Warriors for students and youth in an engaging style of writing, which touched upon the concerns of students and asking them to face all challenges with flair, without fear. He has often exhorted students to follow their passions, saying that clarity in thought and faith in conviction and character to act are essential to succeed. He has also stated that it is important how we deal with examinations, as it tells us about our personality and strengths.

Here are key takeaways from this year’s Pariksha Pe Charcha 2020:

On Children’s Mood Going Off, and Staying Motivated to study

Mr. Modi encouraged the students to not lose heart and stay motivated. Changing your thinking style, he mentioned, can help immensely. Do not attach yourself to your expectations to that level, and acknowledge that mind management is necessary to fight de-motivation, as everyone goes through these ups and downs repeatedly.

Quoting the example of failure faced in the Chandrayaan expedition of ISRO, Mr. Modi noted how his presence and encouraging words to the scientists despite the challenges experienced helped changed the otherwise despondent atmosphere of the whole country. As Mr. Modi noted, even in failure one can find learnings for success. Every effort can be full of success, and even if you fail, believe that you have commenced your journey towards success. He also quoted the famous turnaround in the famous 2001 Kolkata India-Australia test match, where Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman snatched victory from the jaws of defeat by continuing to remain motivated and resolving to play each ball. He also quoted the famous 2002 – India-West Indies test match in Antigua where Anil Kumble played with a broken jaw to dismiss ace batsman Brian Lara himself, bowled. Took Lara’s wicket to highlight how one man’s resolve can change an entire country’s emotions.

On whether Marks Determine Success in Life

Mr. Modi exhorted parents to not pressurize their kids about high scores in examinations, saying that it is not the end of the world. He exhorted everyone to learn from the example of farmers, who may not be much educated but their awareness of technology and science that changes their life in myriad ways. There are several opportunities to take us forward, and numbers do not mean everything, he clearly stated. Mere exam scores do not determine the lives of students – they are just a milestone in life.

On the Need to Balance Co-Curricular and Academics

One should take time out to engage in co-curricular activities, as this along with education gives us opportunity to learn and know something. One should continue to pursue excellence in whatever area one may life. Our learnings in all spheres of life needs to be put to test daily. Mr. Modi clearly stated that he wants to see India’s youth full of energy, with dreams and courage to fulfil them. However, that does not mean that parents put pressure on students for co-ed activities, as is becoming fashionable these days. Rather, it is the duty of parents to search for local activities and then see what interests the kids, and nudge them forward in a well-structured way.

On the Merits and De-Merits of Science and Technology in Daily Lives

Over the past two-three decades, science and technology have completely transformed lives. Life itself has become technology-driven. One should not let fear of technology enter your lives. People should try to make it useful for their lives as well, instead of letting it become a time-waster. It is being seen that tech is becoming a distraction for several students.

Technology however cannot replace human interaction; students should prevent themselves from getting distracted, and should rather use technology for their learning. Also, networking with people physically should remain important – to prevent this disconnect within families and friends, every day, people should take out one-two hours of spare time exclusively for themselves, away from technologies like smart phones. They should rather engage in other activities like gardening, taking pets out. Also, in their homes, students should identify one room where technology has no entry.

On Rights and Duties of Students to be Performed

Rights and duties are spoken together, however, there remains confusion about the two terms. There are fundamental duties, as Gandhiji used to say, not fundamental rights – if we do our duties correctly rights will automatically get protected.

As a nation, we have our duties to perform if we want to take India forward. In 2047, the present 10th and 12th standard students will be leaders across different spheres of life; however, with a broken system, their leadership will fail. Unless India is strengthened, the future will not be able to benefit. After all, our ancestors fought for freedom to become self-sufficient, live with dignity and self respect. What enhances these values is what we have to do as duty. For instance, we ensure that we buy local, buy Make in India – this is going to benefit India and its economy. Also, maintaining cleanliness is just as important a duty towards India; so is preventing wastage of water, electricity, and not accept riding in trains without tickets.

Managing Pressure of Expectations of Good Marks

Parents and teachers should think about the capability of students and encourage them. As small children, you encourage your kids to take up activities on your own with love and affection. That attitude should continue; moreover, encourage them despite failures. There is a thin line between pursuit and pressure. Let your children socialize with those who they are comfortable with, let them interact and talk openly and later understand what your children are worried about through these people. Parents should make efforts to know their children better, while also ensuring to identify the skills they possess. Greater encouragement leads to better results. More pressure will lead to more problems needs to be identified.

On the Best Time to Study

It is very difficult to answer this question because what is the ideal time to stay awake is difficult. However, one must note that that tiredness of the day, and the day’s activities tire the mind, making it difficult to engage later. Then your mind is unable to focus. One should ideally try to start the day before sunrise, as you are fresh and healthy in the mind after a good night’s sleep. Your mind will register more of what you study at such times. It is believed globally that morning is ideal to study. If we live in sync with nature, nature will itself help you to progress. Try doing that. However, eventually one should follow what they are comfortable with.

On Overcoming Examination Stress

Just like your elders often tilt the scooter and shake it when it does not start in one go, or how players mock their actions before they start the actual game, you should try to do some action to enter your comfort zone. Spend a minute or two before you commence writing by doing simple things like looking at the pen. Also, enter the exam hall with self-confidence. However big and tough the question paper, it will help. Start with the simplest questions first, get accustomed to writing the answer, and then move to the tough questions. Once you get used to this, it is easier. Moreover, stay focused on what you want to do, and you will be able to deliver on your own instantly.

On Choosing Career Options

One must step out of their protected life and comfort zone, and take on challenges to know what you really want to do and your limits. Through the year, maintain a diary. This will help you to discover what you really like doing. You will receive many opportunities in life – wherever you feel you succeeded, you should nurture that accordingly.

Career is important. Everyone has to bear responsibilities and still contribute to the nation. However, do not get into herd mentality, as it does not help you. Parents need to ensure that they nurture their children’s ambitions and talents too.

Also, exams should be faced without fear. Do not fear losing out in entrance exams. Not moving forward due to fear of failure is the worst situation imaginable. We learn from our failures, and these lessons help to succeed. This is not just during our student life – you are a student for life, and it should never be allowed to die.

On Worries Related to Competitive Examinations

The stress of competitive examinations is due to the ambition within you, that you want to become someone and so make it a matter of life and death. As students, one feels that the doors to success close if you fail in the exam. This is a result of identifying yourself with a particular career. A careful reading of the book Exam Warriors will help you realize that we should never dream of becoming someone. Rather, we should dream about doing something – you will certainly succeed in life, and there will never be any pressure for an exam. Going ahead, there are innumerable opportunities, just believe that the world will accept you with open arms.