24-year-old from Bihar tops UPSC civil services exam
The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) on Friday announced the final results of the civil services examinations 2020 with Shubham Kumar, a resident of Bihar’s Katihar district, securing the all India rank one.
According to a statement issued by the UPSC, a total of 761 candidates, including 545 men and 216 women, have been recommended for various services including the Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS) and Indian Police Service (IPS), among others.
Kumar, 24, who qualified with anthropology as his optional subject, received his BTech degree in civil engineering from IIT-Bombay. It was his third attempt and he is currently undergoing training at the Indian Defence Account Services in Pune. He had secured 290th rank last year.
“I was not expecting this jump. Neither I nor my family could believe it when we first saw the rank list. It took us some time to realise that this had actually happened. My parents are thrilled with my success... As an IAS officer, I will work with a focus on rural development. I will be really happy if I get Bihar cadre,” he said.
Kumar’s father Devanad Singh, who works as a manager in a bank in Bihar, said: “His aim was to clear IAS from the very beginning and hence he never gave up and even after 290th rank he continued to prepare and today he made all of us proud. I got the news through my son who called me from Delhi to inform me about the result.”
Kumar’s sister is a scientist at the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre.
Jagrati Awasthi, who has completed her BTech in electrical engineering from Bhopal, secured the all India rank 2 and emerged as the topper among women candidates. Ankita Jain secured the third position. Among the top 20 candidates was Ria Dabi, younger sister of all India 2015 topper Tina Dabi. Ria secured the 15th rank.
The civil services examination is conducted annually in three phases -- preliminary, main and interview -- to select candidates for the country’s premier civil services. The preliminary exam was held on October 4, 2020, with 1,040,060 candidates applying for it, of which 482,770 appeared.
As per UPSC, a total of 10,564 candidates appeared in the written, or main exam, held in January, and of them, 2,053 qualified for the personality test.
Of the successful candidates, 263 were from the general category, 86 from the economically weaker section (EWS), 220 from other backward classes (OBC), 122 Scheduled Castes (SC) and 621 from the Scheduled Tribe (ST) category. The recommended candidates also include 25 people with disabilities, UPSC said.
Among the top 25 candidates, 13 are men and 12 women. According to the commission, the common subjects opted by the top 25 candidates were anthropology, civil engineering, commerce & accountancy, economics, geography, mathematics, mechanical engineering, medical science, philosophy, physics, political science & international relations, public administration, and sociology as their optional choices in the written (main) examination.
The commission said that the educational qualification of the top 25 candidates ranged from graduates in engineering; humanities; commerce and medicine from some of the country’s premier institutions such as IITs, NITs, BITS, St. Xavier’s College, University of Mumbai, Delhi University, among others.
Meanwhile, about 150 candidates have been placed under the reserved category.
With inputs from Aditya Nath Jha in Purnia