Two want to become IAS officers, a third an engineer and the fourth wants to study political science. But the four students who bagged the top three slots in the Class 12 CBSE examinations this year are unanimous in saying that their mantra for success is hard work and not getting bogged down by pressure.
Raksha Gopal, who topped the Central Board of Secondary Examination (CBSE) with 99.6 per cent marks, wants to study Political Science in Lady Shri Ram College or Miranda House.
Gopal, an Arts stream student of Amity International School in Noida, gives all credit for her success to her parents and school teachers who guided her.
"I was confident of getting good marks in the examination, but was not expecting to top in the exam," an exuberant Gopal said.
Gopal got 100 marks in three subjects, bagging a score of 498 out of 500 in five subjects.
Asked about her study methods, she said: "I never took pressure due to exams, but I did my studies regularly."
Gopal also said she never went for tuitions.
In advice to students who would be appearing in the Class 12 next year, Gopal said: "Don't get pressurised by the subjects, but study with full dedication -- that is the real mantra of success."
Bhoomi Sawant De, a student of Science from DAV Chandigarh, bagged the second spot with 99.4 per cent marks.
"When I came to Class 11, I was a bit confused about how to start my studies. But my parents and teachers helped me come out of the confusion," De said.
De wants to do B.Tech in Computer Science and become an engineer.
Recalling her hard work, she said: "I was consistent in studying and never put pressure on myself. After coming from school and tutions I used to revise my subjects."
De said she used to study four-five hours a day.
In a message to Class 12 students, De said: "Self study is very important. Never count the number of hours you put into studies."
She said that students must stay in touch with their teachers and keep on revising their subjects.
Asked if she had expected to top in the board examination, De said: "I was confident of getting good marks, but never imagined I would top in the exams. However, my parents were confident that I would top."
Aditya Jain and Mannat Luthra, both from Bhavan Vidyalaya in Chandigarh, came joint third with 99.2 per cent marks each.
Luthra said: "When I came to Class 11 I had planned my studies in a way so that I don't put pressure on myself."
"I used to study four-five hours a day after coming back from school and tutions," she said.
Luthra, who wants to become an IAS officer, said she wants to study Economic (Hons) in Delhi University.
Jain said it has been his dream to get into St Stephen's College in Delhi University, and he had remained focused on studies, and his marks were a result of that effort.
"My focus was clear, and due to my dedication towards my subjects I got good marks in the Class 12 exams," Jain said.
"I was confident of getting great marks. Topping in the exam was a matter of hard work and luck," he said.
He said after finishing his graduation in Economics from St Stephen's, he wants to become an IAS officer.
"Don't think about the quantity time spent on studies, but rather on the quality of time spent on study. If you want to score great marks then you have to be focused about studies and love your subjects," Jain said, in his advice.
The CBSE Class 12 examinations were held between March 9 to April 29, for which a total of 6,38,865 boys and 4,60,026 girls appeared.
The pass percentage this year dropped to 82 per cent compared with 83.05 per cent last year.
The results were delayed after the board proposed to scrap the "moderation policy".
However, the Delhi High Court shot down the proposal, saying the rules cannot be changed at the eleventh hour.