Agastya Impact Stories – Pavan

Agastya Impact Stories – Pavan

By Guest Contributor Adhirath Sethi
Author of The Moving of Mountains, Adhirath Sethi, tells the remarkable story of Pavan and how the Agastya International Foundation helped him achieve success.

Pavan Kumar, a young man associated with Agastya, offers an interesting piece of advice to those he meets: “By sharing your knowledge your influence will be improved and your values increased.”

Pavan grew up in a small village in Chittoor District, about 20 km from Agastya’s Kuppam Campus. He absolutely loved his time at Agastya. Emphasising the strong support he received from his family, he says that he and his friends felt like going to the Agastya campus was a grand festival for them; the new classes and experiences were something out of the ordinary.

Pavan, who humbly describes himself as an enthusiastic, hyperactive, but average student, was selected as a Young Instructor Leader when he was in the 7th grade. He claims that at the time he did not know much, but that the emphasis on creativity and curiosity set sparks flying in his mind.

Pavan recalls the influence Agastya has on his education and on him as an individual. He appreciated the abundant nature on campus, the friendly faculty, and the hands-on learning experiences that Agastya provided. In addition, he believes he gained important life skills such as leadership, teaching skills, and the ability to stay calm and regulate his emotions, which he attained by meditating for 5 minutes each time before entering the YIL lab.

The son of a cattle farmer, Pavan has had a connection to grasslands since he was a very young boy. He understood the difficulties of the profession and identified the danger of farmers having to water their crops at odd hours of the night due to the presence of snakes.

In the 8th grade, with the help of his YIL team, Pavan created an automated irrigation system. Using sensors that connected a phone to motors, Pavan’s system would help farmers irrigate their crops easily and from the safety of their homes.

The invention won him 2nd place at a state-level competition, which he describes as an extremely memorable achievement.

In addition to this, Pavan also identified the issue of multiple accidents taking place on the road in front of his school because of no sign board. Calling it the best initiative of the YIL team, he organized a donation drive in his village to install a speed breaker on the road to ensure greater safety and reduce accidents. Pavan also participated in awareness campaigns in factories, offices, and trains regarding cleanliness and the reduction of waste.

Pavan recently graduated college with a degree in computer science. Wanting to share the knowledge he gained at Agastya, Pavan’s career morphed into one involving social media. He has one YouTube channel about science facts and experiments and another channel about wealth creation. Pavan speaks about how one must be a job creator rather than a job seeker. He has amassed almost 250,000 subscribers within 3 months. His love for wealth creation is so deep that he has founded a start-up to further his influence and spread knowledge about this field on a much larger scale. His initiatives include teaching around 5000 students online and conducting 2000 plus seminars offline as well as planning free courses in self-development, money management, and marketing.

Determined to help reduce the increasing unemployment around him, Pavan also looks to assist people to leverage social media to monetize their knowhow. For instance, he taught a farmer how to make informative videos about the process of watering plants and managing fields, helping him earn some extra income.

Pavan hopes that once he establishes his start-up, he can give back to Agastya and its students. He credits Agastya for helping him improve his speaking and marketing skills and mentions that the foundation is quite underrated despite its huge impact.

When asked about his hopes for the future, Pavan responds by saying that he wishes to see Indian knowledge develop companies in India rather than abroad and hopes that future generations would develop life skills rather than merely chase a degree.

His final message to all Agastya students was to explore and learn everything, share that knowledge with others, utilize all of their resources prudently; and last but not least, seize every opportunity that comes their way 


Adirath Sethi is a Trustee of the Agastya International Foundation. He was formerly a management consultant at the Boston Consulting Group and is today a Director of his family’s business in India.

Suggested Reading

The Moving of Mountains tells the story of Agastya’s remarkable origins, the individuals who devoted their resources and efforts to make a difference, the vision and beliefs behind Agastya, and the many children who have benefitted from Agastya’s renowned experiments in educational innovation and project-based learning programs. The Moving of Mountains is, moreover, the story of an extraordinary and generous dream of a group of people who wanted to make available a path of discovery for everyone.

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