In the last twelve years, women topped the prestigious UPSC Civil Services Examination (CSE) for eight times. More significantly, beginning from 2014, women candidates were the toppers for the consecutive three years. The success of women in one of the toughest competitive exams in the world is an indication of emergence of women power in the country.
On the occasion of the International Women’s Day on 8 March 2018, Jagran Josh has explored their journey towards success.
Nandini K R
Coming from a small town called Kolar in Karnataka, Nandini K R has topped the CSE 2016. She is the first one in the family to become a central government officer and she cleared the exam with kannada literature as the optional subject. She completed her Bachelor of Engineering (Civil) from the M S Ramaiah Institute of Technology, Bengaluru. And, at the time of selection, she was an Indian Revenue Service (IRS) officer and was undergoing training at the National Academy of Customs, Excise and Narcotics in Faridabad, Haryana.
She topped the CSE 2015. She belongs to Delhi and, in fact, she is the first woman from the Schedule Caste (SC) to top the prestigious exam. Political Science was her optional subject and she cleared the exam at the age of 22. She studied in the Lady Shri Ram College for Women in Delhi and stood as the university topper in studies too.
Ira Singhal deserves special credit as she is a divyang. This topper of the CSE 2014 cleared the exam with geography as the optional subject. She belongs to Delhi and completed B.E. (Computer Science) and MBA. At the time of selection, she was an IRS officer.
Haritha V Kumar
She achieved the first rank in the CSE 2012. Hailing from a small town called Neyyattinkara in Kerala, she cleared the exam with Economics and Malayalam Literature as the optional subjects. To pursue her IAS dream, she declined a job offer from the HCL Technologies. At the time of selection, she was a trainee IPS officer.
She is the topper of the CSE 2011. After completing MBBS from the AIIMS in New Delhi, she appeared for the IAS exam. She cleared the exam with Medical Science and Psychology as the optional subjects. She is a native of Haryana. She topped the exam in the third attempt and at the time of the selection she was an IRS officer.
She is the topper of the CSE 2011 and belongs to Tamil Nadu. Though she couldn’t clear the Prelims exam in her first attempt, she didn’t give up on her self and worked hard to achieve her goal in the second attempt. Being a law graduate from the School of Excellence in Law, Chennai, she opted Law and Public Adminisitration as optional subjects. At the time of selection, she was working as an officer in the State Bank of India (SBI).
Born in Uttar Pradesh's Bareli, she topped the CSE 2008 with psychology and public administration as optional subjects. After her graduation from the IIT-Roorkee, she started her career as a software engineer. After working for a few years, she gave up the plush corporate life as she wanted to be in a career that gives opportunities to serve people directly.
She is the topper of the CSE 2005 and hails from Haryana. After completing B.A. (English) from the Lady Shri Ram College for Women and, later, M.Phil from the Delhi University, she appeared for the UPSC Civil Service Examination. Her optional subjects were English Literature and Sociology.
Besides the above mentioned toppers, hundreds of other women have cleared the Civil Services Exam in recent years and were selected to prominent services like Indian Police Service (IPS), Indian Foregin Services (IFoS) and Indian Forestry Services (IFS). Their hardwork, persistence and will power continues to inspire the lakhs of women across the country to dream big and achieve big in life.
Best wishes to all the women aspirants on the occasion of the International Women’s Day.