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Radhakrishna Temple: An insight into the prayers of Kota's exam hopefuls

Do you remember Aman Gupta? The young student who committed suicide in Kota last month?

Barely out of his childhood, Aman was so overwhelmed with the expectations of his family that he chose to jump into the Chambal river to end his life. Before committing this act, he recorded a video on his mobile phone seeking forgiveness of his family members.

"Mujhse nahin ho pa raha hai. Main asafal ho gaya hoon aur isi vajah se atamhatya kar raha hoon (It is no longer possible for me. I am committing suicide because I have failed)," Aman stated in the video.

These words reflected the mental agony of an adolescent who had not even started the journey of his life as yet.

However, Aman is not the only one who finds it hard to carry the burden of aspirations imposed by their loved ones. According to statistics, around 1 lakh students enrol every year in various coaching institutions in Kota. They carry on their shoulders the responsibility of realising the dreams of their families who often spend beyond their means to give their children a chance to compete for a bright career.

While the family pressure can act as inspiration for some students, for others it becomes the cause of despair, borne out of the fear of failure.

The reader can see these apprehensions taking the shape of words over the walls of a temple. This writer believes the sentiments inscribed on this wall are not very far from the mental stage where a child turns suicidal.

This is the wall of the Radhakrishna temple in Kota\'s Talwandi area. Students come here to seek blessings for success and express their feeling of distress in this manner. Some statements plead with god to ensure success in IIT exams. Others seek strength to fulfill the dreams of their family.

These words are not merely wishes. They are the lamentations of vulnerable young minds who find it difficult to bear the pressure of performance. It is mostly such students that hang themselves from ceiling fans or jump into some river.

Aman was the 14th student to commit suicide in Kota this year. The figure for the last year was 31.