What Previous Year IIT JEE AIR – 1 Rankers are doing with their lives?

Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) is an all India common engineering entrance examination of objective pattern which is conducted for admission in various engineering colleges and courses all over the country. It is regarded internationally as one of the most challenging engineering admission tests. Every year lakhs of students take the exam to get the glorious title of an IITian. Apart from the IIT tag, a seat in IIT guarantees a high salary job. Top companies would bid to hire you at the start of placement season and angel investors are all ears if you have a business plan.

The person who comes first in this exam becomes celebrity. People give utmost importance to that person. So Ever thought, where are these toppers and what are they doing with their lives?

So we tried to find out where these toppers are and what they are doing right now. We prepared a year wise list of these toppers.

Pandurang Nayak – AIR 1, 1980 , Joined IIT Bombay 

Panduram Nayak achieved AIR-1 in 1980 in IIT-JEE. He is currently working at Google, working on various aspects of Search Quality. He is particularly interested in query understanding and helping users formulate better queries.He received a B.Tech. in Computer Science and Engineering from IIT-Bombay, and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Stanford University. Prior to joining Google he was the Chief Architect and then CTO of Stratify, Inc. Prior to joining Stratify, he was a Research Scientist at the NASA Ames Research Center. While at NASA he served as the Deputy Lead of the Remote Agent project. The Remote Agent was the first Artificial Intelligence system to be given primary command of a spacecraft.

Sanjeeva Prasad – AIR 1, 1981,Joined IIT Kanpur

Sanjeeva Prasad achieved AIR-1 in IIT-JEE in 1981 and joined IIT Kanpur to pursue B.Tech in Computer Science from this university. He is currently professor in Computer Science department at IIT Delhi. He can be considered as one of the most eminent professor of IIT Delhi. Been an AIR-1 during his days, Sanjiva Prasad never lost his intellectual charm. He is proficient with Languages, Mythology, Indian Philosophy and of course computer science.

Dr. Sunil Arya – AIR 1, 1982, Joined IIT Kanpur

Dr. Arya received his BTech degree in Computer Science and Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, in 1986, and his MS and PhD degrees in Computer Science from the University of Maryland, College Park, in 1990 and 1995, respectively. He has been a visiting researcher at the Max-Planck-Institut fur Informatik in Saarbrucken, Germany. Dr. Arya joined Hong Kong University of Science and Technology in August 1995. His research interests include computational geometry, data structures and algorithms, and approximation algorithms.

R.S. Sundaresh – AIR 1,1983, Joined IIT Madras

R.S. Sundaresh achieved AIR 1 in 1983 and joined IIT Madras for pursuing B.Tech in CS. After that he did Phd. from Yale.

Navin Budhiraja – AIR 1,1984, Joined IIT Kanpur

Navin Budhiraja

Navin Budhiraja achieved AIR-1 in 1984. He completed his B.Tech from IIT Kanpur and then completed Ph.D from Cornell University. He worked as a researcher in IBM T J Watson research Center from  (3 years). Then he worked as Chief Architect in Vitria Technology from (7 years). After that he joined as Vice President Engineering in Augmentum Inc and worked till  (2 years 9 months). Then he changed many jobs. Currently he is working as SVP, Head – Architecture and Technology in Infosys.

Vineet Gupta – AIR 1, 1985, Joined IIT Kanpur

Vineet Gupta, the brilliant son of Dr Sunder Lal Gupta, a former Panjab University mathematics professor, topped the country in the IIT-JEE in 1985.The nation’s topper was then awarded a cash prize of Rs 1 lakh by the tutorial college from where he received coaching. Vineet joined IIT Kanpur and in 1989 topped his batch, getting the President’s Gold Medal. “Vineet enrolled for a PhD at Stanford University and immediately after his doctorate, he started his first job at the Xerox Research Centre,” recalls Professor Gupta. Vineet joined NASA after Xerox and is now working with Google for the past three years. “He is posted in Bangalore for the past one year,” he said.Dr Gupta has also retained the newspaper cutting that had reported his son’s glorious achievement. “When he topped the country, I told him that his record would remain unbroken for at least 20 years, a statement which proved true. And I am glad that city students have done us all proud once again,” he said.Vineet had done his schooling from St John’s High School followed by a two-year stint in DAV College, Sector 10.

Sanjeev Arora – AIR 1,1986, Joined IIT Kanpur

Sanjeev Arora.jpg

In 1986, Sanjeev Arora topped the prestigious IIT JEE but transferred to MIT after 2 years at IIT Kanpur. He was a visiting scholar at the Institute for Advanced Study in 2002-03. He is a theoretical computer scientist who is best known for his work on probabilistically checkable proofs and, in particular, the PCP theorem. He is currently the Charles C. Fitzmorris Professor of Computer Science at Princeton University, and his research interests include computational complexity theory, uses of randomness in computation, probabilistically checkable proofs, computing approximate solutions to NP-hard problems, and geometric embeddings of metric spaces. He received a B.S. in Mathematics with Computer Science from MIT in 1990 and received a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of California, Berkeley in 1994 under Umesh Vazirani. His Ph.D. thesis on probabilistically checkable proofs received the ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award in 1995. He was awarded the Gödel Prize for his work on the PCP theorem in 2001 and again in 2010 for the discovery (concurrently with Joseph S. B. Mitchell) of a polynomial time approximation scheme for the euclidean travelling salesman problem. In 2008 he was inducted as a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery. In 2011 he was awarded the ACM Infosys Foundation Award, given to mid-career researchers in Computer Science. Arora has been awarded the Fulkerson Prize for 2012 for his work on improving the approximation ratio for graph separators and related problems (jointly with Satish Rao and Umesh Vazirani). He is a coauthor (with Boaz Barak) of the book Computational Complexity: A Modern Approach and is a founder, and on the Executive Board, of Princeton’s Center for Computational Intractability. He and his coauthors have argued that certain financial products are associated with computational asymmetry which under certain conditions may lead to market instability.

Rajesh Gopakumar – AIR 1, 1987, Joined IIT Kanpur

In 1986, Rajesh Gopakumar topped the IIT JEE exam.  Rajesh Gopakumar, a theoretical physicist, is director of the International Centre for Theoretical Sciences (ICTS-TIFR) in Bangalore, India. He was previously a professor at Harish-Chandra Research Institute (HRI) in Allahabad, India. He is known for his work on topological string theory. Gopakumar obtained his integrated M.Sc. degree in physics from the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur in 1992. He received his Ph.D. from Princeton University in 1997 under the supervision of David Gross. After a few years as a research associate at Harvard University, he joined HRI in 2001. He was also a Visiting Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, New Jersey from 2001 to 2004.Gopakumar is a string theorist. His research is primarily focused on topological string theory. He is known for proposing with Cumrun Vafa the Gopakumar–Vafa duality and Gopakumar–Vafa invariants.Gopakumar was awarded the 2004 B.M. Birla Science Prize in Physics.He received the 2006 ICTP Prize.He received the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Award in 2009.[2]He was named Fellow of the Global Young Academy of Scientists for 2010. He is a member of the Indian National Science Academy, and the Indian Academy of Sciences.[10]He received The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) award in 2013.

A Raghav Chari – AIR 1, 1988

A Raghav Chari topped IIT JEE Exam in 1986. He completed his education from Caltech.

Vineet Buch – AIR 1, 1989, Joined IIT Kanpur

Vineet Buch

Vineet Buch topped IIT JEE in 1987. He is from Bhopal. He completed B.Tech in Computer Science from IIT Kanpur in 1993. Then he completed M.S in Computer Science from Cornell University in 1995. He is currently the director of product management at Google. Prior to that, he founded Like.com. He was a partner at Bluerun Ventures from  to Director, Server Advanced Technologies in Oracle Corporation  to He was Co-founder and CTO of Karient, Inc from  to Senior Director, Engineering in Corio, Inc from  to Practice Manager, Consulting in Oracle Corporation  to 


Ashish Goel-AIR 1,1990, Joined IIT Kanpur

Ashish Goel is Professor of Management Science and Engineering, and Computer Science at Stanford University.  and a member of Stanford’s Institute for Computational and Mathematical Engineering. He received his PhD in Computer Science from Stanford in 1999, and was an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at the University of Southern California from 1999 to 2002. His research interests lie in the design, analysis, and applications of algorithms; current application areas of interest include social networks, participatory democracy, Internet commerce, and large scale data processing. Professor Goel is a recipient of an Alfred P. Sloan faculty fellowship (2004-06), a Terman faculty fellowship from Stanford, an NSF Career Award (2002-07), and a Rajeev Motwani mentorship award (2010). He was a co-author on the paper that won the best paper award at WWW 2009, and an Edelman Laureate in 2014. Professor Goel was a research fellow and technical advisor at Twitter, Inc. from July 2009 to Aug 2014.