He is a teacher to millions of Indians who aspire to a better life but are held back by numerous constraints. Awal Madaan is an educator and the founder of AwalEnglish.com that makes learning English more fun and less painstaking for those want to learn the language. We hosted Awal for an interview as part of our latest series, NewsX Influencer A-List. Below are a few excerpts from the interview:

For our first question, we asked Awal about what inspired him to create the content that his brand is known for, to which he replied, “My mission is to help people grow, especially people from smaller cities and towns of India. I want them to achieve their goals.” He continued, “So, in that process, I help them learn communication skills, I help them learn soft skills.”

We then wanted to know about the kind of response his English lessons have recieved from learners. He told us, “So far, I have garnered about 11M followers on YouTube, and I’m making videos which are English tutorials but through Hindi.” Awal added, “So, primarily focusing on people who are from smaller cities and towns; North Indian, Hindi-speaking background.” He also narrated his own struggle when he moved to Delhi and had to learn English all by himself. “I had to learn all the skills the hard way, and I had to invent my own strategies and techniques for that,” he revealed.

Our next question to Awal was about he keeps his audience interested in the learning process. He stated, “That’s why I came up with this concept of ‘edutainment.'” Continuing the response, he said, “When I started creating videos, I wanted to make sure that I do not stand in front of a whiteboard and teach English or any other skill. So I started making videos through roleplays, through sketches, through stories, through characters.” He further said, “I make content for real life. I don’t make content for people to help pass exams.”

Awal makes videos and enacts characters in them to help people effectively communicate in different social scenarios and places. “That’s the USP, that’s the differentiator which I feel is the reason that people are glued to my channel, glued to my videos.”

Speaking about the growth of the creator community in India, Awal said, “Oh, yes, definitely, it is growing.” He further said, “The credit goes to YouTube, because it has provided a free platform to the users, as well as the educators.” Further putting forward his thought, Awal said, “An educational channel like mine, having 11M subscribers shows that users have the intent to learn and study on YouTube. They are not their just for the entertainment.”

He also went ahead to appreciate online educators and stated, “The community of educators coming online – that’s a great step. I salute everyone who is educating online on YouTube because they are contributing to the nation, they are contributing to the growth of citizens of the nation.” He ended the response by saying, “Eventually, the economic growth will happen when the citizens are educated and skilled.”

Watch the full interview here: