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UPSC woman topper Jagrati Awasthi fulfils childhood dream, lists her mantra for success

Jagrati Awasthi is among the 761 candidates—including 545 men and 216 women—who have cleared the civil services examination 2020, according to the the Union Public Service Commission. 
Jagrati Awasthi, the second rank holder, celebrates after Union Public Service Commission declared UPSC civil services results. (PTI Photo)
Published on Sep 25, 2021 08:46 AM IST
By hindustantimes.com | Written by Meenakshi Ray, New Delhi

For Jagrati Awasthi, it is a childhood dream come true and she now wants to work for the development of rural areas when she joins the country's bureaucracy. Awasthi has said hard work and self-confidence have helped her achieve success as she cleared the coveted civil services examination (CSE) in her second attempt. She secured the second rank in the Civil Services Examination 2020, results of which were declared by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) on Friday.

“After completing my BTech from Maulana Azad National Institute of Technology (MANIT) in Bhopal, I joined Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL). I worked there from 2017-2019. But since childhood, I had a dream of becoming a district collector and work in social areas,” Awasthi, who is also the topper among women UPSC candidates, told PTI.

Also read | Exciting, satisfying career awaits: PM Modi says as UPSC declares results

The 24-year-old Bhopal resident said that even after getting a job in her chosen field of engineering, she continued to work towards becoming a civil servant. “When I was not selected for civil services in the first attempt, I decided to leave the job (at BHEL) and focused on my preparations for the CSE,” she said.

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She said that quitting her job was a risky move however it was all worth it. “I left my job in 2019 and started working hard. Then the coronavirus pandemic struck (in early 2020), but it gave me some more time for preparations. I finally got success in my second attempt,” Awasthi said.

Also read | 24-year-old from Bihar tops UPSC civil services exam

"During Covid times, coaching centres were all closed, yet maintaining motivation at home was really crucial,” Awasthi told ANI. "Initially, I studied for 8 to 10 hours. Eventually, I increased it to 10 to 12 hours and about two months before the exam, I further pushed it to 12 to 14 hours," she said, according to the news agency.

Asked to give a message to civil services aspirants, she said, “They should work hard, have confidence in themselves and this will help them achieve success.”

According to UPSC, 761 candidates—including 545 men and 216 women—have cleared the civil services examination 2020 and engineering graduate Shubham Kumar ranked first. Ankita Jain has achieved the third rank in the prestigious exam, considered one of the toughest in the country.

Also read | Dream to join IAS and serve underprivileged realised: UPSC topper Shubham Kumar

As many as 10,40,060 candidates applied for the exam, out of whom 4,82,770 appeared in it, the commission said in a statement. There were 10,564 candidates who qualified for appearance in the written to the main examination held in January this year. It added that 2,053 candidates qualified for the personality test (interview).

UPSC conducts the civil services examination in three stages—preliminary, main and interview—to select officers for the Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS) and Indian Police Service (IPS), among others.

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