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Meet Varshil Shah, the Gujarat state board topper who chose to be a monk

After scoring 99.9 percentile in Gujarat State Board Class XII, Shah attained monkhood on Thursday

Neha Mishra  |  New Delhi 

Representative image
Representative image

If you have passed your higher secondary with an exceptionally good score, your next goal would most likely be cracking a competitive and making it to one of the best colleges for a higher course. Indeed, you would be looking forward to a promising ahead.

But 17-year-old Varshil Shah, who topped the commerce stream class XII of the by scoring 99.9 percentile, had different plans. He surprised many by his decision to renounce everything normal by conventional standards and become a But this rather odd choice for a 21st century teenager did not shock Varshil’s parents.

Raised by devout parents, Shah always led an austere lifestyle, which could appear to be an effect of religious devotion and His mother Amiben Shah and father Jigarbhai, an income-tax official, are happy with their son’s decision. They said in a statement that the family was always spiritually inclined.

On Thursday morning, his diksha took place on the banks of Tapi at 4.30 am, with nearly 10,000 people in attendance, after which he embraced monkhood. Varshil completed pre-dawn ritual as a disciple with shaved head and white robes after receiving the blessings of his family and And, from now he will be known by his new name, Muni Suvirya Ratna Vijayji.

Vrajesh Parikh, the principal of Navkar Public where Varshil went, said: "I remember him as someone who never complained about anything. He did not even come to to collect his mark sheet. Nor did he collect the Navkar Jyot Award which we have initiated this year for toppers.”

The Shah household avoids using and keeps it to a bare minimum, as they believe aquatic animals are killed in the process of power generation, something that is against the vow of ahimsa, or non-violence, reported Hindustan Times.

During the diksha ceremony, Varshil told the gathering: “Reaching till diksha was the pinnacle of happiness for me, more than topping Class XII. Where the human being finds happiness, he goes there on his own, he needs nobody to tell him.”

His friends remember Varshil as an all-rounder who is a great chess and cricket player, besides being an extraordinary singer and artist. 

First Published: Fri, June 09 2017. 13:02 IST