Mutturaj dropped out of school and worked in a hotel before finding his way back into mainstream schooling. Now, despite an interruption in formal education, he has made his family, school and well-wishers proud by scoring first class marks in the SSLC examination.

Originally from the backward H.D. Kote region in Mysore district, Mutturaj reportedly went to Mangalore with his mother and sister, discontinuing his studies when in class 3.

According to Odanadi, a voluntary organisation working to rescue and rehabilitate exploited women and children, it rescued and rehabilitated the boy and his sister. By then, Mutturaj had worked in a hotel for over a year. In Mysore, the organisation worked to make sure that he rejoined school in class 7.

Thanks to his hard work, the boy, a student of the railway school here, scored 473 out of 625 marks in the SSLC examination.

He stood first in a district-level science talent competition, which earned him a scholarship and books for his studies.

Prabhamani S., a representative of Odanadi, told The Hindu that boy had expressed his desire to take up a career as a journalist or a lecturer.