When I first saw the trailer for Kota Factory, it didn’t feel anything less than a documentary. A documentary about the small city in Rajasthan, where thousands of students go every year, either by their choice or because of parents’ pressure. They all have one goal – IIT or AIIMS. While most students prepare for 2 years, there are many who start preparing 4 years, 5 years, 7 years prior to the JEE/NEET day. Kota is the hub of the preparation for these competitive exams. While there are coaching institutes opening on every corner of every city in this country, Kota is known to manufacture rankers in its factory. And, which parent doesn’t think that their child’s photograph deserves to be on the first page of the newspaper? Hence, off they send their kids to Kota.
Bachhe do saal me Kota se nikal jaate hai, Kota saalon tak bachhon se nhi nikalta.Jeetu Bhaiyya
There’s one more thing Kota is known for – Suicide Rates. Every year there is news of not one but many students killing themselves because their JEE went bad. Because they screwed up NEET. Over the years, Kota has started to become synonymous with suicide. TVF’s show doesn’t talk about it in this season though, so I wish they explore than in the subsequent seasons.
Talking about the show, it takes place in Kota and follows Vaibhav, who joins one of the coachings in middle of 11th Grade. He wants to crack IIT, and is determined to clear it, but requires a proper guidance, which he finds in a very wise and genius teacher, Jeetu Bhaiyya. Jeetu Bhaiyya acts as a mentor, as Vaibhav works towards his goal and overcomes the challenges he faces – A mediocre batch, handling the pressure, Inorganic Chemistry, and more.
And, Kota Factory does an amazing job in displaying the reality of the coaching industry on screen, something other such shows fail to do. I’ve been going to VMC, a JEE coaching in Delhi, for 4 years, and sat for my JEE Main just a month back. Just like Jeetu Bhaiyya, I’ve had several amazing Bhaiyyas during this journey, who’ve helped me tackle all kinds of issues, not just course related.
– Jeetu Bhaiyya ab bhaiyya nhi rahe. Kya ban gye hain?
A sir comes in the class, teaches, solves your doubt and leaves. But a bhaiyya will also share an informal bind with you, which will make you comfortable enough to share your problems with him. The show displays how important that Student-Teacher bond is, and that is what makes a teacher successful.
In subtle ways throughout its run, the show also leaves small tips about dealing with the competition and cracking a question, which makes me wish that this show had aired a year back. Around 1.5 years back, Biswa Kalyan Rath’s Laakhon Mein Ek was also made on a similar theme about coaching centres and their pressure, but call it lazy writing, it got quite distracted into unnecessary stuff, added with a weird unrealistic climax. Kota Factory tops that by a margin, by showing the colourless life of JEE aspirants without colours. The last episode had me in tears, and at the same time, made me smile.
If you’ve been a science student in India, this small 5 episode web series is highly recommended. TVF is known to create amazing content, be it Pitchers, Tripling or more. But this has to be their best work till date. The writers have done a proper research of the topics, how they’re taught, and just everything they need to, in order to make a proper show about JEE Aspirants.
Check out the trailer here, and do watch the show on YouTube or TVFPlay. Hoping they’ll make a second season soon.
If you’ve been to a JEE coaching, I would love to know how your experience differs from that in the show. And, if someone from Kota is reading this, I would love to hear from you even more! Comment below!