Civil services exam topper Shubham Kumar on Friday said his dream to become an IAS officer and to serve the underprivileged has been realised. Speaking to PTI, he said development of villages, employment generation and poverty alleviation in rural areas of the country would be his focus areas.
Kumar, aged 24 years, topped the civil services examination in his third attempt. He got selected in the Indian Defence Accounts Service (IDAS) after qualifying the civil services examination 2019. Kumar could not make it in his first attempt in the 2018 examination.
A Bachelor of Technology (civil engineering) graduate from IIT Bombay, he has qualified the 2020 examination with anthropology as his optional subject. Kumar, who hails from Katihar in Bihar, is currently undergoing training at the National Academy of Defence Financial Management (NADFM), Pune.
"My dream was to get into the IAS as it gives a wider platform to work for the betterment of the people. It has been realised and I would like to work for the underprivileged people, especially in rural areas," he said. Kumar said areas like poverty alleviation and development of villages and its people would be his focus area while in the service.
"There are lots of areas in which we all can work to uplift the underprivileged and bring positive changes," he said. Kumar said he got a lot of support from his father and the academy, especially its director, in preparing for the examination.
Younger of the two siblings, his elder sister work as a scientist in Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC). "My father used to motivate me a lot and helped me in maintaining a positive attitude that helped me in clearing the exam, said Kumar, adding that his father works as a bank manager in Bihar.
Second rank holder Jagrati Awasthi, who hails from Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh, said she would also like to join the IAS and work for rural development, besides women and child development.
"I have opted for IAS. I got motivated from people around me. I would like to work for development of rural areas besides women and child development, she told PTI over phone from Bhopal.
Awasthi, aged 24 years, believes skilling women, especially from rural areas, in handicrafts can make India a world leader in the sector. She completed her schooling from Maharishi Vidya Mandir and graduation in electrical engineering from Maulana Azad National Institute of Technology (MANIT), Bhopal.
Awasthi qualified the examination with sociology as her optional subject. Awasthi said she had left her job at Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL), Bhopal to prepare for the examination.
"I worked with BHEL for two years after completing my graduation in 2017. I could not clear the examination in first attempt. This was my second exam, said Awasthi, who is also the overall topper among women candidates.
She said her brother, who is pursuing medical studies in Bhopal, was the biggest source of inspiration for her. Awasthi's father is a professor and mother is homemaker.
A total of 761 candidates -- 545 men and 216 women -- have cleared the civil services examination 2020, results of which were declared on Friday by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).
The civil services examination is conducted annually by the UPSC in three stages -- preliminary, main and interview -- to select officers of Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS) and Indian Police Service (IPS), among others.
The UPSC said that the top 25 candidates comprise 13 men and 12 women. Ria Dabi, who is the sister of 2015 civil services exam topper Tina Dabi, has secured 15th rank in the examination. Tina Dabi, an IAS officer, is currently posted in her cadre state Rajasthan.