Brilliant but Flawed: Details of UCLA Shooter’s Childhood Emerge


An undated photo of Mainak Sarkar. (Photo: Facebook via AP)
An undated photo of Mainak Sarkar. (Photo: Facebook via AP)

Brilliant but Flawed: Details of UCLA Shooter’s Childhood Emerge

A day after deadly gunshots were heard at the University of California (UCLA) campus in Los Angeles, the gunman was identified as Mainak Sarkar, a doctoral student of Indian-origin.

Mainak was seemingly a brilliant man, but with a severe personality disorder, sources told The Quint. His family included his parents and an elder sister who lived in a 580 square feet flat at Bidhannagar, Durgapur in West Bengal.

After Mainak’s father retired from a Durgapur factory in the late 1990s, the family sold the flat. The new owner found all the walls of the two-room flat, including those of the bathrooms, filled with math problems and equations.

The new owner, a mathematics private tutor, said that it was clear from the nature of the problems that a very bright youngster had worked on them.
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Mainak’s Mother Died Several Years Ago

After passing ICSE from St Michael’s School, Mainak completed his ISC (Indian School Certificate) examination from DAV School in Durgapur. His science teacher in school and his classmates remember him as a very quiet boy whose entire life revolved around academics.

Mainak’s mother, who was apparently heartbroken at her son’s decision to settle abroad, died several years ago.

His father, who lived in an old-age home in Jadavpur, near his daughter’s place, died in a rail accident during a trip to Durgapur to collect his pension. Mainak’s sister is apparently his only surviving relative. However, The Quint wasn’t able to locate his sister.

Mainak had been pursuing his PhD for 10 years at UCLA. Born in India, he was an alumnus of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kharagpur, a premiere Indian institution. Before enrolling into UCLA, he earned a Master’s degree from Stanford University. His educational qualifications point to a highly qualified student, striving for an academic breakthrough for more than a decade.

Also Read: Mainak Sarkar, The Struggling PhD Scholar Who Turned UCLA Shooter

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