Ganesh Kumar told news channels that singer Lata Mangeshkar was known as ‘Maithili Kokila’, a title bestowed on folk singer Sharda Sinha.
Ganesh Kumar can’t sing well, is confused about who Lata Mangeshkar is and has trouble playing even a tabla or a flute.
But the 24-year-old has topped Bihar’s Class 12 examinations in the humanities stream and has snowballed into the latest controversy to hit the beleaguered state education board tainted with charges of mass irregularities and cheating.
Ganesh, a resident of Giridih in Jharkhand, studied 250 kilometres away in Bihar at a school that doesn’t have any musical instruments and just six ramshackle rooms with asbestos roof. This, however, didn’t stop him from scoring 65 out of 70 in music practicals.
“I don’t know much about music. I just attended a couple of music classes in the last two years… I never thought I would become a topper,” he told India Today news channel.
This is the second straight year the Bihar state board is battling such charges of irregularities. Last year, arts topper Ruby Rai topped the Class 12 examination but told reporters that “prodigal science” – she probably meant political science – was about cooking.
— ANI (@ANI_news) June 1, 2017
The 24-year-old appeared for the board exams at Ramnandan Singh Jagdip Narayan High school in Samastipur’s Chhakhabib village and scored 82.6 per cent. He got 92 per cent in Hindi, 82 per cent in music and 42 per cent in social science.
He told news channels that singer Lata Mangeshkar was known as ‘Maithili Kokila’, a title bestowed on folk singer Sharda Sinha, who is from Samastipur. He also seemed to have a difficult time explaining ‘sur’, ‘taal’ and ‘matra’.
The school where he studied from is run by a man identified as Abhitendra Kumar, son of a BJP activist Jawahar Prasad Singh. The school was affiliated in 2013 by the Bihar State Education Board.
He was not a regular student of the school and his examination form did not mention his present address. There is no date of admission mentioned in the admission form.
When mediapersons contacted Jawahar Prasad, founder secretary of the school said, “I am surprised that he has topped the Arts stream of the Bihar Board.”